Volunteer News from the Desk of Dana Shapiro
Quarterly Newsletter: July 2021

Dear JFCS Volunteers,

I hope you and your families are doing well and enjoying summer so far! We are staying busy at JFCS and have continued to see an increase in needs across programs and services. In case you missed CEO Judy Halper's column last month, you can read it here.

In this issue you will find info on:
  • Volunteer Spotlight - Sheryl Rutzick
  • Current Volunteer Opportunities
  • Annual Meeting Recap
  • National Volunteer Week Recap
  • Staff Q&A - Alyson Jones
  • Pictures of Volunteers in Action
  • Save the Dates
  • Mitzvah Cards
  • COVID-19 Emergency Financial Aid Fund

We love to see our volunteers in action so if you ever have pictures to share from your volunteer experience, please consider sending them my way. These are great to include in our newsletters and they help us to promote our volunteer opportunities to others.

Thank you all for your continued support of volunteer services! We couldn't do what we do without our wonderful volunteers.

Warmly,
Dana Shapiro
Community and Volunteer Engagement Coordinator & Intake Counselor
dshapiro@jfcsmpls.org or 952-417-2112

How long have you been volunteering with JFCS and what motivated you to volunteer with us?
I do not recall when I began my volunteer partnership with JFCS, but I would tend to guess it was before I retired in 2011, knowing I would have plenty of free time and wanting to be able to give back to my community and help others.


Do you want to share about your volunteer experience with JFCS?
We love hearing from our volunteers and are always looking for different people to highlight. Email Dana at dshapiro@jfcsmpls.org and she will follow up. Thanks for your consideration!
Current volunteer opportunities for JFCS
Drivers to provide transportation for appointments

Due to growing needs, we are seeking a few new volunteers who are comfortable providing transportation to others during this time and can help support our staff drivers.
 
Garber Transportation volunteer drivers get to sign up for rides that work for their schedule and use their own car to pick up clients who need rides to necessary appointments and errands.
 
JFCS strictly follows CDC guidelines. One of the changes made during COVID-19 is that clients sit in the backseat on the opposite side of the driver. We also limit the cars to one client, and both the client and volunteer are required to wear a face mask.
 
To learn more about the program, check out these links:

If you are interested, please contact Dana Shapiro at dshapiro@jfcsmpls.org.

Involvement with the Hag Sameach Program

Did you know that the Hag Sameach (Happy Holidays) program also helps Beyond the Holidays? This program within Hag Sameach allows us to help people in our community with everyday essentials throughout the year. There are two ways you can get involved now.

1. Purchase items online through our wish lists which share suggestions of common types of items requested by recipients: >Click here for Amazon registry

Contact Mindy Teele at mteele@jfcsmpls.org with any questions.


2. Adopt-a-Family for the holidays or as part of our Beyond The Holidays experience. Help a family in need any time of the year.

For the winter holidays, the Adopt-A-Family experience truly encompasses our goal of providing gift packages that are specific and meaningful to the recipients. Families who we identify as Adopt-A-Family candidates are those who are more in need of essentials, clothing and other items that are not always readily available in our warehouse.

Being an Adopt-A-Family donor is a fulfilling and fun experience! Whether you want to do this alone, with your family, card group, work colleagues, etc., it is a great way to join together to help a family in need this upcoming holiday season.

The first candle of Chanukah is on Nov. 28, so please let us know by early October if you are interested in sponsoring a family this year. 

If you would like to learn more about this program or to be added to the list to receive information on families to choose from (fully confidential - names and other private information will not be shared), please reach out to Mindy Teele at mteele@jfcsmpls.org.

Cards for the Community – Send a card to JFCS clients and program participants

Looking for a fun and easy way to give back from the comfort of your own home?

We are looking for volunteers to participate in this family-friendly volunteer opportunity by writing a note(s) to let our clients and program participants know you are thinking about them, and reminding them that they are not alone.

These cards don't have to be fancy, so no pressure if you don't feel creative. Your words will go a long way!

If you want to help out, contact dshapiro@jfcsmpls.org to receive specific card making instructions.
Volunteer opportunity next door at PRISM
Looking to volunteer with a regular shift each week? Our neighbors can use some extra help

Starting on July 12, PRISM's Shop for Change will be open on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. They are in need of more volunteers to cover the shifts within the sorting room and at their register. Three hour shifts are available starting at 9 a.m. and 12 p.m.

They are also extending their hours on Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. starting on July 15 and could use more volunteers at the register in the evenings from 5-7 p.m.

Dana is connecting volunteers to PRISM, so contact her at dshapiro@jfcsmpls.org to learn more.
A special acknowledgement of dedicated volunteers Jory Herman, Alan Ingber and business partner Affiance Financial
On June 9, JFCS hosted its 111th Annual Meeting on Zoom. At the event, we acknowledged the contributions of dedicated volunteers Jory Herman and Alan Ingber and generous business partner Affiance Financial.
 

Congrats to the new 2021-22 Board of Directors!
National Volunteer Week was an opportunity to honor our 725 volunteers who stepped up during the past year
National Volunteer Week took place in April and we celebrated and recognized our volunteers for all they do in a number of ways, including posting daily videos on Facebook highlighting them, reaching out to personally thank them, and hosting our second virtual happy hour, where we were happy to have Golden Valley Mayor Shep Harris join us!


Staff Q&A: Meet NextGen Coordinator Alyson Jones
How long have you worked at JFCS?
I have worked at JFCS for just over a year! I started June 1, 2020. Before that, I was a NextGen Board member for three years and was a NextGen participant for a couple years before that.

What are some volunteer opportunities NextGen has been involved in?
Over the past year, NextGen has been involved in PRISM’s Back to School Drive, JFCS’ Hag Sameach and Beyond the Holidays program, making Cards for the Community for JFCS program participants and making art and thank you cards for staff and faculty at Sholom Home and Jefferson Elementary School. In past years, NextGen participants have also volunteered with the JFCS Annual Benefit, ParentChild+ Graduation, Emergency Food Boxing, and with other local organizations.


Check out some pictures from the past few months. Thank you to all those who contributed their time to JFCS!
Caregivers Conference delivery materials
PJ Library event delivery
Jewish Youth Mentor and Program Manager at Herzl Camp for staff week training
NextGen participants assembled toiletry kits for Hag Sameach and Beyond the Holidays Program in their Spring Cleaning event. Click here to watch as the filled kits pile up
Cards for the Community
Jewish Youth Mentor and Mentee soaked up the sun during a recent outing
Cards for the Community
Throwback Thursday: Hag Sameach volunteers prepared gifts in the warehouse
Throwback Thursday: Hag Sameach volunteers and staff gathered on delivery day
Throwback Thursday: Hag Sameach delivery for local hospitals and Sholom Home residents
Mark your calendars
Save the dates for these two great events happening later this year...
The 33rd Annual "Laugh on their Behalf" VIRTUAL Benefit is Saturday, Dec. 4.

Stay tuned for details!
JFCS Honor/Memorial "Mitzvah" Cards are a meaningful
and easy way to show someone you care
JFCS Honor/Memorial “Mitzvah” cards are a meaningful way to honor special occasions; celebrate birthdays, anniversaries or graduations; congratulate someone for a special accomplishment; wish someone a speedy recovery; show gratitude for an act of kindness; or honor a loved one’s memory.

Donations can be made in any amount and you can choose to have the donation go towards a named fund or program, or be used where most needed.

The COVID-19 Emergency Financial Aid Fund
Are you experiencing financial need directly related to the coronavirus pandemic or economic downturn? We are able to respond to financial needs by providing assistance in a variety of ways, including scholarships, grants and no-interest loans.

>Click here for more information or call 952-546-0616.

Phone calls, applications and assistance if eligible will be kept completely confidential.
For more information about volunteer services at JFCS, contact Dana Shapiro, Community and Volunteer Engagement Coordinator & Intake Counselor, at dshapiro@jfcsmpls.org or 952-417-2112.
Jewish Family and Children’s Service of Minneapolis
5905 Golden Valley Rd | Golden Valley, MN 55422
952-546-0616 | 952-593-1778 fax | www.jfcsmpls.org