AJFCA Newsletter
In This Issue
AJFCA VISTA Project Sites Currently Recruiting VISTAs to Serve Holocaust Survivors
VISTAs are Volunteers In Service to America  who commit to a year of service to help build the capacity of organizations to meet the demand for services among those living in poverty. The AJFCA VISTA Project focuses specifically on serving Holocaust survivors at the following organizations: JFS Detroit, JFCS of Southern New Jersey and the Goodwin Holocaust Museum and Education Center, JSSA, Ruth & Norman Rales JFS, Bet Tzedek, UJA-Federation of NY, and CJE SeniorLife.

Know a potential Volunteer In Service to America? Please Share! Find the listings online starting May 2nd.  
May is Older American's Month 
May is when we celebrate Older American's Month (OAM), acknowledging the perennial contributions of older adults to our nation. The 2016 OAM theme is Blaze a Trail. Let's use this opportunity to raise awareness about important issues facing older adults, in addition to highlighting the ways that older Americans are advocating for themselves, their peers, and their communities. Learn more about what the Administration for Community Living is doing for OAM and check out their resources here.
Share what your agency is doing with the AJFCA network by emailing Liz.
May is Mental Health Month
Mental Health Month has been observed for more than 65 years. This year's theme Life with a Mental Illness. Agencies are encouraged to reach out to individuals in the community to share what life with a mental illness feels like for them in words, pictures and video by tagging their social media posts with #mentalillnessfeelslike (or submitting to Mental Health America anonymously). Posts will be collected and displayed on a special page on MHA's website. Download the toolkit here
Share what your agency is doing with the AJFCA network by emailing Liz.

JFCS Pittsburgh Names Successor to Retiring CEO

jfcs pittsburgh  
The Board of Directors of Jewish Family & Children's Service of Pittsburgh is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Jordan Golin to assume the leadership of the organization following the anticipated retirement of current President & CEO Aryeh Sherman in fall of 2016.

Sherman announced his retirement last fall, allowing the Board of Directors ample time to conduct a search for his replacement and ensure a smooth transition of leadership.

Dr. Golin is presently Chief Operating Officer and Director of Psychological Services $ Elder Care at JF&CS, and has worked for the agency for 16 years. He has been instrumental in the development of expanded services over his tenure. Continue reading here.

April 22, 2016  
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The Voice and Vision for Stronger Communities

D'Var Torah 
Lee I. Sherman 
I have written in this space many times that Passover is my favorite holiday.  Spending time with family, connecting with the story of the journey from slavery to freedom, the re-awakening of spring, and the smells and tastes of the incredible foods, all make this a special time for me. It is also a time to think of those who are not as fortunate, the struggles they face in their lives, and how we can do more for them.

Earlier this week, the city of Houston experienced its second round of extensive flooding in less than a year. Many homes that have only recently been repaired from last May's flood were once again overwhelmed by the rising water. Areas in the Jewish community, including synagogues, were particularly hard hit. As Linda Burger, CEO of JFS Houston, related:  "This storm has hurt a whole lot of people throughout the city. This recovery will take a very long time and families will be hurting for many years." Linda's own home was once again surrounded by water. Fortunately, the restoration work she did from the last storm mitigated the damage this time. But, her Passover tables that were already beautifully set had to be cleared and taken down. They are now once again set for the Seder and the Burgers and their guests will take special joy in this year's Passover celebration.

For those interested in helping those who were victimized by the flood waters, you can donate to the wonderful work of JFS Houston here. Wishing you and your families a Chag Pesach Sameach. 
AJFCA's Monthly Legislative Wrap Up from D.C.  capital  
Read AJFCA's new Monthly Legislative Wrap Up from D.C. here. Learn more about restroom access for transgender individuals and recommendations, an update on the Older Americans Act Reauthorization Act, new legislation to improve the ABLE Act and the National Council for Behavioral Health's Public Policy Institute and expansion of excellence in Mental Health Act.
Passover Stories 2016
These are not the usual Passover stories. That is they are not about Pharaoh, serpents or even frogs or locusts. Not even about Moses and Miriam, let alone God himself. They are the neighborhood stories. The ones that go something like this... Read the stories here.
Hooked on Grants: The Hidden Scourge NPQ
Everybody remembers their first time winning a grant or landing their first major gift. The rush from winning those funds is not unlike the rush of winning any big bet. When your organization is heavily reliant on grants and donations, it puts your organization in a gambler's funding cycle, with potentials for booms and busts. The rush of winning a grant or a major donation is huge; there is a sense of power in it. Your ideas have attracted money, and money gets the work done. Money attracts more money, and all of a sudden you're a visionary social entrepreneur. Continue reading here.
2016 AJFCA Annual Conference
We can't wait to see you in sunny San Diego!  
AJFCA Domestic Violence Professionals Call:   
Domestic Violence Legislation & Advocacy
When caught up with the day-to-day details of providing critical services and/or education on domestic violence, it's easy to forget that decisions at the state and federal level can directly impact agencies' abilities to serve the most vulnerable. Join your colleagues for a domestic violence public policy informational call with Liz Leibowitz, Director of Government Affairs at JFNA and AJFCA. Liz will discuss recent federal domestic violence legislation that's been introduced or is pending, as well as over-viewing steps that agencies and individuals can take to advocate on behalf of domestic violence issues locally and federally. Professionals are encouraged to prepare questions and to share any advocacy efforts with which they may have been or currently be involved.

Domestic Violence Legislation & Advocacy
Tuesday, April 26th - 2pm ET - REGISTER HERE
Older Adult & Disability Services
Senior Resource Connect Incentive Program
Thank you to all of the Friends and Allies supporting Senior Resource Connect! View the list of supporters. Learn more and get involved! Submit a partner circle story.

Best Practices Resource Guide
AJFCA is collecting best practices in older adult services throughout the the Senior Resource Connect network. We are looking for programs that work and can be replicated in other communities to be included in a members-only resource guide. Submission Deadline: June 15, 2016.

Aging & Disabilities Services
AJFCA is interested in learning more about the overlap in disabilities and older adult services throughout our network. Tell us about your work in this area by filling out our survey.
AJFCA Volunteer Professional Summit 
August 7th & 8th  
JFS Denver, CO   
AJFCA will hold its first Volunteer Professional Summit in partnership with JFS Colorado on August 7th & 8th. The meeting will begin with an evening of networking on Sunday, August 7th followed by a day of programming on Monday, August 8th. Want to suggest a topic or present your agency's program? Let us know. Detailed information will be available shortly.
Keshet/AJFCA Leadership Project:  The Summit
The Keshet/AJFCA Leadership Project is co-sponsored by Keshet, AJFCA and JFCS Greater Philadelphia.

What: The Keshet/AJFCA Leadership Project is a year-long program that gathers, trains, provides resources for, and supports member agencies to become more inclusive of LGBT clients and community members. The Project will kick off with a one-day in-person training (the Summit), and continue with five coaching sessions to provide follow-up support over the course of one year to help participating agencies full carry out the actions plans they create.
Who: Member agencies are invited to send a team of 2-3 staff and/or lay leaders. You're encouraged to send at least one team member who can lead change at your agency.
When: Monday, September 12th, 10am-4pm
Where: At the offices of JFCS Philadelphia
Cost:  $750/agency for the full year
  1. Learn how to evaluate current programs, policies, culture and identify areas for growth in LGBT inclusion.
  2. Discover how to recognize opportunities and challenges for welcoming and affirming LGBT members of your community. 
  3. Create an achievable action plan for making your agency more LGBT inclusive.
  4. Receive expert coaching and support from Keshet to implement your action plan.
For further information, please contact Lisa.
AJFCA Senior Services Midwest Meeting
September 25th & 26th
JFCS St. Louis, MO 
Last year's senior service meeting was a huge success and we're thrilled to offer another meeting for older adult services professionals September 25th & 26th. The meeting will begin in the afternoon on Sunday, September 25th followed by a day of programming on Monday, September 26th. Click here to view a tentative schedule. Want to suggest a topic or present your agency's program? Detailed information will be available shortly.
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