AJFCA Newsletter
In This Issue
Five of the Most Important Facts Everyone Gets Wrong About Social Security 

Social Security has been around for 80 years, but it's still hard to get all of the facts straight. Only 28 percent of people passed a 10-question true or false quiz on Social Security benefits, according to a study by MassMutual Life Insurance Company. Learn more here.

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Click here to access Senior Resource Connect and stay current on the latest trends in older adult services.

AJFCA launched our new older adult services website, Senior Resource Connect this summer. The website aims to leverage the expertise of Jewish family services agencies assisting older adults in the community, increase referrals to member agency programs, streamline referrals between agencies, and act as an information hub on all matters of senior services.

Share this great news with your community.
VISTA Project Year 1 Wrap-Up 
A year ago this month VISTA members from the AJFCA VISTA Project, joined by Special Envoy for U.S. Holocaust Survivor Services Aviva Sufian, met in Philadelphia to commence the AJFCA VISTA Project. This week the project came full circle as project VISTA members, AJFCA staff, and Aviva Sufian met via conference call for a project wrap-up discussion. VISTA members shared key activities, highlights, and lessons learned from the project year.

VISTA members engaged in a range of activities to build the capacity of their agencies to meet the needs of Holocaust survivors including conducting needs assessments, creating new partnerships and programs,  volunteer mobilization, community education and training, developing and improving internal database systems, and many other activities. In addition to sharing their project work VISTA members reported on their future plans, all of which revolve around continued focus in the areas of nonprofit leadership, public policy, social work or service. AJFCA appreciates the hard work and dedication VISTA members have shown throughout the project year and congratulates them on their success. Learn more about the project impact here.
JFS San Diego's Girls Give Back Receives Hadassah Foundation Grant
jfs san diego   
Generously supported by the Hadassah Foundation, Jewish Family Service of San Diego's Girls Give Back engages teen girls in fun, positive leadership and team-building activities and gives girls the opportunity to explore the community through hands-on service learning and advocacy projects.

Girls Give Back promotes Jewish values and the importance of Tikkun Olam while developing social-mindedness, critical thinking, healthy self-esteem, and empathy in high school girls.

In the past year, Girls Give Back teens:

- Volunteered more than 1,800 hours, earning the President's Gold Volunteer Service Award.
- Organized a middle-school girls empowerment program, Girls Unite!, for Jewish tweens in grades 6-8.
- Created a 50-foot mural for the San Diego Airport on the historic and contemporary struggles facing women and girls.
- Designed an advocacy campaign around the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) and successfully secured three co-sponsors, including Susan Davis.
- Participated in a week-long experiential learning about homelessness and poverty in San Diego.

- Teens volunteered with eight different service providers to distribute food, work in shelters, and empower vulnerable teens.
- Hosted two community screenings of the award-winning documentary Girl Rising. More than 150 attendees learned about the importance of girls' education across the globe.

The Hadassah Foundation, which invests in social change to empower girls and women in Israel and the United States, has given $150,000 in grants to five American organizations that strengthen the leadership develop skills and capabilities of Jewish girls and young women. Jewish Family Service of San Diego was awarded $35,200 to strengthen leadership development opportunities for young Jewish women. 
Learn more about Girls Give Back here. Read about the Hadassah Foundation's new grants for leadership development for Jewish teens and young women here.
August 14, 2015  
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D'Var Torah 
Lee I. Sherman
This past Monday, I spent a day of exchanging ideas and resources with a group of talented and passionate professionals from AJFCA member agencies from across the country. The topic was domestic violence programs and services, and how our agencies are supporting victims of violence and providing incredible educational activities for younger populations that prevent the kinds of behavior that can lead to physical, sexual, and emotional abuse. These were difficult conversations, but highlight the intense need in all of our communities for professionals trained to educate and heal our society.  

This week's parashah, Re'eh, continues Moses oration to the people in preparation for their entry into the Land of Israel. The parashah opens with a simple statement, you will be blessed if you follow God's commandments and cursed if you do not. The chapters follow with specific laws to be observed (dietary, festivals, etc.) and the consequences if they are not. Repeatedly, we are given examples of how we can devote ourselves to God. This devotion is best expressed through avodah, meaningful service. In the Temple period this included sacrifice, but in our post-Temple world, prayer is our instrument of devotion. And beyond prayer, avodah is work, the kind of work that exemplifies our commitment to the commandments.

The work of our Jewish human service agencies is truly avodah, meaningful service. We are told in this parashah that there will always be needy in our midst, and we understand that to mean those that require our support for a variety of individual and communal needs. I am so grateful that we have so many dedicated professionals to lead us in this endeavor.

Have a meaningful Shabbat.
AJFCA Statement on Social and Economic Injustice
The Steering Committee of the AJFCA CEO Council has drafted the following position statement to reflect our network's concern over events that have occurred and sadly continue to occur in cities across the globe.
We know that the power of our collective rests on joining our voices and our actions to promote social and economic justice. We invite all AJFCA members and partner agencies to share this statement and to act in support of justice using the list linked below.

"It is not your responsibility to complete the work, neither are you free to desist from it."
Pirkei Avot (Ethics of our Fathers) 2:16

As a people who have experienced and understand the implications of being a minority, it is a defining value to speak out on behalf of the disadvantaged and work toward justice wherever possible. In the daily work of Jewish social service agencies, we serve many people who struggle with poverty, hunger, and lack of opportunity. Events that have occurred throughout North America and globally in the past year inspire us, once again, to raise our voices in support of social and economic justice. We believe that every person carries a divine spark within, and as such deserves dignity and respect. We believe that the path to a stronger community rests on building connections among us that promote collective strength, not isolation. This is the time to grow in understanding and compassion, and to act to address these concerns. Together, our actions will take root so that poverty, hunger, and prejudice no longer have a place in our communities. As members of AJFCA there are many ways that you can act locally to address these concerns.
Department of Labor (DOL) Overtime Proposal - Survey & Call
AJFCA would like to get a sense of the potential impact of this proposed update to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the potential impact it may have on our network through a brief survey. Join your colleagues for a discussion of the rule, implications and possible strategies.

The Department of Labor has proposed an update to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) overtime regulations that would increase the number of employees eligible for overtime pay. AJFCA has joined other nonprofits in calling for the DOL to extend the comment period beyond the September 4, 2015 deadline in order to review the impact on the nonprofit human service sector. The Department of Labor's webpage includes the full proposed rule as well as a fact sheet and other resources.  

AJFCA US Member Agencies Executives & Senior Managers Call: Department of Labor (DOL) Overtime Proposal
Thursday, August 20th - 3pm ET - REGISTER HERE
I am Here; Hear Me Bark: Comedy, Disability, and the Inclusive Synagogue
I am Here; Hear Me Bark: Comedy, Disability, and the Inclusive Synagogue, ELItalks, by Pamela Schuller
Inclusion specialist and Comedian Pamela Schuller provides personal insight into what inclusion really means and why it's so important for the Jewish community. Watch her talk here.
Dementia Friendly Communities 
Join the National Alzheimer's and Dementia Resource Center and Annette Sandler, Director of Aging and Disabilities Services at Jewish Family and Children's Service of Minneapolis for a webinar on creating communities that are safe and respectful, provide support, and work toward quality of life for people living with dementia and their families.
Webinar participants will learn about key concepts related to Dementia Friendly Communities and hear from community leaders putting these concepts into action.

Demential Friendly Communities
Tuesday, September 1st, 3pm ET - REGISTER HERE
How Managers Become Leaders:  Resilience
How Managers Become Leaders:  Resilience, August 5, 2015, SmartBlog on Leadership, by George Everly
Resilience is the quality of believing in your ability to bounce back should failure occur, writes George S. Everly Jr., and it is essential to meeting the challenges of leadership. Resilient leaders combine that toughness with a set of values wherein they consider the risks and effects on others before making decisions, rather than in hindsight, Everly argues. Read the entire article here.
A Success Story - Institutional Life Adapts ejewish philanthropy
A Success Story - Institutional Life Adapts, August 7, 2015, eJP, by Emily Chaleff
Just like the silver-haired patriarch of a big family, a storied organization can grow older, often wider, and more set in its ways as time passes. However, as immutable as your grandfather might be, institutions can change. Continue reading here.
2015 Domestic Violence Professionals Fly In
Sixteen domestic violence professionals gathered on Monday, August 10th in Skokie, IL at Jewish Child & Family Services of Chicago for AJFCA's first Domestic Violence Professionals Fly In. Participants described the gathering as inspiring and invigorating. Shari Bloomberg, LCSW, Clinical Director, Domestic Violence Services at JFS MetroWest, NJ and Fly In presenter said, "I know collaboratively, we can strengthen each other, our programs and the community as a whole."

Conference Call:  Resource Sharing
Join domestic violence professionals for a call to discuss the success of the fly in, next steps, the sharing of resources and national funding on Tuesday, August 25th at 2pm ET. REGISTER HERE.
2015 AJFCA Regional Meetings
Join AJFCA's Older Adult Service Professionals in West Bloomfield, MI on Sunday, August 30th and Monday, August 31st. Click here to learn more and register today!
Addictions' Professionals Call
Addictions' Professionals are invited to join Daniel Krasner, National Clinical Solutions Provider & ARISE Interventionist Intern from 2015 AJFCA Annual Conference sponsor, Ranch at Dove Tree for a discussion surrounding young adult addiction and recovery trends including collegiate recovery communities and programs. 

Addictions' Professionals Call
Thursday, August 20th - 2pm ET - REGISTER HERE
Advocacy Day  capital
The 2015 AJFCA Advocacy Day will take place on Tuesday, October 27th in Washington, DC. Learn about public policies affecting your work, and advocate for your priorities at meetings at the White House and on Capitol Hill (lunch included).

Reserve your room at the Renaissance Washington, DC Dupont Circle Hotel (via the link) by calling 888-803-1298. Please identify yourself as part of the AJFCA group when making your reservation. The group rate is $219.00 per night, plus tax. Reservations must be made by October 3rd. Please contact Zahava at 410-843-7487 with questions.
Board Diversity Toolkit board source
Board Diversity Toolkit, August 6, 2015, BoardSource
According to BoardSource's report, Leading with Intent: A National Index of Nonprofit Board Practices, board diversity is increasing but gaps exist. Diversity in Action, a free BoardSource toolkit, is designed to help you increase the diversity of your own board. Download it now.
Bring-'Em-Close Welcome Packs network for good
Bring-'Em-Close Welcome Packs, August 7, 2015, Nonprofit Marketing Blog, by Nancy Schwartz
I just donated to your organization for the very first time. So what kind of welcome am I going to get? Will you respond ASAP with a quick, impersonal email and never be heard from again? Or will I receive that generic email or letter a few weeks or even months later, when I've totally moved on, and that's the last I hear from you-until you ask me for more money? Continue reading here
Who'd Think that Giving to Charity Could Save Time? nonprofit quarterly
Who'd Think that Giving to Charity Could Save Time? August 7, 2015, Nonprofit Quarterly, by Debbie Laskey
For those who dine at restaurants on a regular basis and also like to use their mobile devices, either for making reservations or checking menus, philanthropy has become the latest choice on the menu. As an extension of SmartLine, a computer program for restaurants that helps manage wait lists and guest data, CharityWait is a new mobile app that provides a way for diners who have to wait for a table to be philanthropic. Learn more here.
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