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

Dear JFCS volunteers,

National Volunteer Week is right around the corner (April 18-24) and we have some exciting things planned to recognize and celebrate your service as a JFCS volunteer.

Despite the many changes that COVID-19 has brought, I’m proud to report that we were able to engage 725 new and returning volunteers through 70+ volunteer opportunities in 2020! Many of our volunteer offerings pivoted as we found new and creative ways to keep our volunteers feeling engaged with JFCS’ mission.

In this issue you will find info on:
  • National Volunteer Week
  • Current Volunteer Opportunities
  • Volunteer Spotlights
  • Pictures of Volunteer Projects in Action
  • Staff Q&A with Becky Lyle Sulkin - Jewish Youth Mentoring Program Manager
  • Keeping the Spirit Alive Caregivers Conference
  • Clean Speech Minnesota
  • COVID-19 Emergency Financial Aid Fund

We are lucky to have such wonderful volunteers at JFCS and we couldn't do what we do without you! We hope you can join us for the Virtual Volunteer Appreciation Happy Hour on April 27. Read on for more info on how to sign up.

Warmly,
Dana Shapiro
Community and Volunteer Engagement Coordinator
& Intake Counselor
dshapiro@jfcsmpls.org or 952-417-2112
National Volunteer Week
Thank you to our volunteers for helping us in so many ways throughout the year
Whether you volunteered with us for the first time, or have been a longtime volunteer, we appreciate you.

Check out volunteer videos on Facebook
Visit us on Facebook next week, where you will hear from current volunteers as they share about their volunteer experiences. Be sure to check back each day for a new video and share these videos with family and friends.
You are invited to attend the Virtual Volunteer Appreciation Happy Hour
Tuesday, April 27 @ 5 p.m. CDT on Zoom

In celebration of National Volunteer Week, we will gather on Zoom to thank JFCS volunteers and celebrate your ongoing dedication and commitment to serving our community.

Golden Valley Mayor Shep Harris will join us for the event.
 
Current Volunteer Opportunities
Good Deeds Day – Sunday, April 25
PJ Library Minneapolis, Heilicher Minneapolis Jewish Day School, and Talmud Torah of Minneapolis are partnering again this spring to bring Good Deeds Day to your home!

Families that register will be mailed a new spring-themed Kindness Kit, with a focus on environmental justice, anti-racism, and honoring our elders. The kit contents can be completed on your own time at home. The activities are designed to promote compassion and ignite important discussions with your family.


Contact Carrie at cfink@jfcsmpls.org with any questions.

Deliver Event Materials to Conference Attendees – Wednesday, April 28

We are seeking volunteers willing to assist with deliveries of event materials. These are contact-less deliveries where you will pick up from JFCS on Wednesday, April 28 (between 2-6 p.m.) and make your deliveries around the community by Friday, April 30 before sundown. This is a fun and easy way to get involved and COVID-19 safety guidelines and further instructions will be provided.

Contact Dana at dshapiro@jfcsmpls.org if you are willing to help.

Seeking Mentor for Featured Mentee, Jonah
 
The Jewish Youth Mentoring Program (JYMP) is excited to feature Jonah, a 15-year-old mentee who has been patiently awaiting his perfect mentor. Jonah is an intelligent and adventurous young man who is looking forward to connecting with an adult that will appreciate his maturity and curiosity. “I’m looking for someone to grow and develop with me so I can show them and teach them things I’m interested in,” he stated. Jonah enjoys snowboarding and has a passion for fishing, which he is eager to share with a mentor.
 

Contact Becky at bsulkin@jfcsmpls.org with any questions.

Provide Transportation for Appointments

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 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:

Contact dshapiro@jfcsmpls.org if you are interested.

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.

As COVID-19 continues to greatly impact our lives, many people are feeling extra isolated and could benefit from hearing from others. These cards don't have to be fancy, so no pressure if you don't feel creative. Your words will go a long way!

Contact dshapiro@jfcsmpls.org to receive specific card making instructions.

Volunteer Spotlights

Check out these recent blog posts below to learn about our featured volunteers' experiences with JFCS

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 with 'Volunteer Spotlight' in the subject line and she will follow up. Thanks for your consideration!

Check out some recent pictures of JFCS volunteers helping out in a number of ways these past few months.
Passover Bag Delivery Calls
Passover Bag Prep
Passover Bag Delivery
PJ Library Event Delivery
PJ Library Event Delivery
PJ Library Event Delivery
Passover Bag Delivery
Passover Bag Delivery
PJ Library Event Delivery
Cards for the Community
Cards for the Community
Cards for the Community
PJ Library Event Materials
Passover Bag Delivery
PJ Library Event Delivery
Passover Bag Delivery
Passover Bag Delivery
Passover Bag Delivery
NextGen's #HeartArtShare Event with Moishe House
NextGen's #HeartArtShare Event with Moishe House
NextGen's #HeartArtShare Event with Moishe House
Fun Facts: The Hag Sameach (Happy Holidays) Program recently provided 331 individuals with Passover food and ritual items. Fifty volunteers made this program possible by helping both in the office and out in the community delivering the bags. Hag Sameach also collaborated with Caring Connections and Jewish Community Addiction Services to help provide Passover food and ritual items to their program participants so that they had what they needed for the Proman Caring Connections and the Freedom from Addiction Zoom seders.

How long have you worked at JFCS?
I have worked at JFCS for five-and-a-half years. I started as a Targeted Case Manager in Mental Health Support Services in October 2015, and became the Program Manager of the Jewish Youth Mentoring Program (formerly Jewish Big Brother/Big Sister) in May 2018.

Tell us about the Jewish Youth Mentor Program and your role interacting with volunteers.
The Jewish Youth Mentoring Program is a community-based mentoring program for Jewish youth that is designed to promote positive social-emotional-spiritual development and increase engagement in the Jewish community. Volunteer mentors have the opportunity to develop special one-to-one, consistent relationships with youth by sharing interests, hobbies and activities. These relationships facilitate youth development by providing positive role modeling, access to Jewish holidays and events, and the chance to have some fun with a friend.

Keeping the Spirit Alive Virtual Conference – Sunday, May 2
Join us for Keeping the Spirit Alive, the conference for caregivers supporting a loved one with Alzheimer’s or dementia. It is designed to support caregivers and let them know that they are not alone on their journey.


30 Days of Clean Speech Minnesota: You can still sign up
Join the Twin Cities Jewish community for a month of speaking mindfully. Our words have the power to unite, rather than divide. What happens when we put this Jewish teaching into practice?

For the month of April, JFCS is partnering with nearly 30 other local Jewish organizations to inspire our community to spend 30 days speaking mindfully. You’ll receive prompts, encouragement, and reflections through email—sign up today.


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