Accelerating Social, Academic and Health Equity
in Our Community
Monthly Report to the Community
April 2021
In celebration of their 50th wedding anniversary, former JFS board member Chester Black and his wife Diane gathered with their six children, their spouses and their 23 grandchildren at the JFS Children’s Clothing Closet for a Ready-to-Wear packing event (September 2019)
Celebrating Max Michelson Humanitarian Awardees
Diane and Chester Black
JFS' 300+ Volunteers

Thursday May 6, 2021 - 7pm

Dear Friends,
We are very excited here at JFS as our annual gala, Seize the Dream, draws near. Click here for the link that will connect you to a fabulous evening on Thursday May 6th at 7:00pm. The theme is Volunteerism and we are very much looking forward to honoring Chester and Diane Black with the Max Michelson Humanitarian Award and also honoring the over 300+ volunteers that make JFS’ work possible. Our video production team recently met with some of our many volunteers to hear their stories and learn first hand how their work makes an impact for JFS and to their own personal lives.

As always, I was quite touched listening to their experiences about the people they are helping, the smiles and thanks they receive for their efforts, and the satisfaction they get from seeing the difference they are making in the lives of others. Join us May 6th to listen to why JFS offers a great opportunity to do good.

Many important initiatives occurring at JFS. Here are a few at the top of the list.

First of all, I’m extremely proud of our JFS Board of Directors as at our board meeting on April 26, 2021 they have approved the setting of the JFS minimum wage to $15/hr. This will effect 30% of our employees (many people of color/Latinx). It took courage for our Board to not want to wait for the Federal or State Government to set it. It makes a huge statement from our Board on Equity and doing the right thing!

Another important initiative for JFS is the fight to beat the Covid-19 pandemic, particularly within communities where members have concerns about the safety of the vaccine. JFS collaborated with the MetroWest Health Foundation in developing a Get the Vaccine Campaign which features informational videos in English, Spanish, and Portuguese – click here to view the videos. Please share through your social media channels to help get the word out and encourage all to get the Covid-19 vaccine.

We also continue to strive for broader impact through the work of the Anti-Racism and Fighting Antisemitism CommitteeHere is the statement I made concerning the verdict on the George Floyd Trial. Active Bystanders can make a difference in the struggle for racial justice. We are pleased to report that the Active Bystander Train the Trainer program has produced 12 trainers that will do Active Bystander training throughout the community. More information on how your organization can get involved is coming soon – stay tuned!

In the meantime, there are many other ways to get involved with JFS. Below are program highlights, updates and profiles of the talented and dedicated individuals who fuel our work in the community, including JFS Board President Joe Volman and staff member Malvina Goldbarb who is a case manager in our Immigrant Services Department and lent her Portuguese language talents to the production of the Get the Vaccine videos. Join featured volunteer Diane Bailey and train to serve as a Patient Navigator, apply for one of our open staff positions, or make a donation to support our many initiatives that strive for change in our community.

Just as our 300+ volunteers respond to the call for action, we invite you to get involved with JFS. Join us for Seize the Dream on May 6th at 7:00pm as we celebrate our honorees and the volunteers who power JFS’ work in the community – click here to receive the link to attend.

To all who volunteer, Happy National Volunteer Month!

And to our friends who celebrate Ramadan, wishing you all the blessings of these holy days – Ramadan Kareem. Happy Ramadan!

Looking forward to seeing you at Seize the Dream!

Lino Covarrubias, CEO
Josef Volman, President, JFS Board of Directors
Director: Since 2011
Place of Employment: Burns & Levinson LLP
Education: Tufts University and University of Connecticut School of Law

Josef (Joe) joined the JFS board because he was looking to be involved in an organization in his area that worked with seniors and children and where he could make an impact. He also wanted his children to see that philanthropy and giving back is very important. Joe’s roots of Jewish philanthropy and Tikkun Olam began when his mom volunteered to be part of the Russian resettlement program in West Hartford, CT. Joe would accompany his mom to greet the new families and welcome them to America. Joe’s mom always volunteered her time and even as she was waging her own battle with cancer, she was volunteering at the Yale hospital children’s cancer ward, comforting children and parents dealing with cancer. Joe’s mom passed in October but her legacy of giving and helping others lives on through Joe and his children. 
In his free time, one of Joe’s favorite things to do is take his dog for a walk in some of the great parks and reservation lands in the area. His dog loves to be able to go off leash and run free. Joe enjoys having these open spaces where he can spend that time with his dog.  
Thank you, Joe for the energy, passion, and commitment you bring to the JFS board.

Diane Bailey
Volunteer since October 2020

Diane Bailey is a hopeful, cheerful person with a pandemic-inspired desire to learn needlepoint. Diane brings her hopeful, cheerful demeanor to her role as a Patient Navigator. She joined the program in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic and thus far has taken elders to 14 medical appointments since completing her training in October. She’s scheduled for four more appointments this month alone. 

Thank you, Diane for all you’re doing to improve access to medical care for elders in our community. 

Why do you believe the work you are doing at JFS is important?

For many reasons, providers are overwhelmed with the number of patients they need to see each day. Our clients are overwhelmed with the amount of information that is being given out and the information they want to impart to the doctor. The Patient Navigator program helps to bridge the information gap. We also help them get to appointments safely and hopefully provide a few minutes of companionship and connection.”
Malvina Drummond-Goldfarb

Program Coordinator, Immigrant Services
With JFS since March 2011
Trilingual in Portuguese, English, and Spanish

“I have been working in the Immigrant Services Program since 2011, assisting hundreds of immigrant families to properly adjust to their new surroundings. This assistance has been done through social service programs, resources, and referrals. Newly arrived families face personal and social challenges by relocating to another land. In response to this, new social and supportive links are established in order to prevent added trauma due to language and cultural barriers. Through our intense case management, we are able to provide medical, employment, nutritional, and legal assistance to our immigrant families. In addition, we serve these clients through our food programs, clothing, backpack and jacket distribution, gift certificates, Thanksgiving and holiday gift assistance.

During this current pandemic, through the COVID Emergency Assistance Program, we have been able to provide financial assistance to dozens of families who were unable to pay for their rent and utilities because they lost their jobs and were not qualified for public benefits. My job as a case manager is to advocate for my clients and to elicit their existing strengths and further empower them to gain the knowledge and confidence they need to navigate the various systems with which they may come in contact. That means addressing their social, emotional, and financial needs and giving them the tools they need to succeed.”

Click here to see Malvina talk about the importance of getting the COVID-19 vaccine in the MetroWest Health Foundation's Get the Vaccine community video!

Together with the help of over 120 volunteers and staff, JFS of Metrowest coordinated the delivery of over 3,300 Kosher meals for Passover to families and older adults throughout Metrowest, Boston and North and South Shore communities.
Thank you Rashi Families, Remi, and Rylie for their Donation to JFS!

JFS sends a shout out to Remi and Rylie for delivering a donation of children and baby socks, baby booties, and more fleece blankets from families at the Rashi School!
These items will be distributed to mothers in the JFS Womb to 5 program and families served by the JFS Children’s Clothing Closet.

What are MetroWest Leaders Saying about the COVID Vaccine?

JFS joins the MetroWest Health Foundation and leaders from across the region to encourage community members to get vaccinated.

JFS Committee on Anti-Racism & Fighting Antisemitism
Learn about upcoming news and events as they occur, like/follow the new JFS Committee on Anti-Racism and Fighting Antisemitism social media channels:

"Sally does not need a nursing home, but is there a third way? Aging in the Community is rapidly replacing aging in place. Senior housing with supports, independent living, retirement community and congregate housing are all names places older adults live that also provides meals, maintenance, and services. Sally has privacy within her own apartment, but she has neighbors, shares meals in the dining room downstairs, has access to transportation and there is always someone around if she needs help or doesn’t want to be alone."

Call the experts at Allies in Aging JFS Elder Care Solutions to help you make the housing choice that is right for you! 
JFS Family Assistance Network

In partnership with Jewish Vocational Service (JVS) and funded by Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP), JFS Ready for Success supports job seekers by setting goals and mapping out a plan leading to job placement, skills upgrades, and career advancement.
"The goal is to assist individuals in crossing the employment finish line and landing a job!"

JFS seeks a full time bilingual caseworker to help advance JFS’ commitment to accelerate social, health and academic equity for low income, often disenfranchised populations. This position will focus mostly on JFS services for immigrants and older adults in Metrowest:

  • Masters or Bachelors plus 3 years experience in related field.
  • Bilingual English and Spanish proficiency required.
  • Ability to interact with clients in a non-judgmental, compassionate, and respectful manner.
  • Demonstrated ability to set limits and maintain boundaries.
  • Strong ability to be part of an interactive, supportive team with high expectations.
  • Ability to develop and maintain knowledge of community resources.
  • Ability to multi-task, operate independently and problem solve in real time.
  • Good written and oral communication skills.
  • Experienced in real-time electronic record keeping skills. (Salesforce Platform experience a plus).

Seeking per diem Geriatric Care Managers to work with growing Metrowest geriatric care management practice--LICSW or CCM preferred but not required; Applicant should have the following qualifications:

  • MSW, RN, or degree in related field
  • 3 to 5 years experience working with older adults and families
  • Experience working with people with dementia preferred
  • Knowledge of community resources and entitlement programs
  • Strong oral and written skills
  • Ability to pay attention to detail and meet deadlines
  • Strong organizational skills
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Ability to use computer (Microsoft Office Suite)
  • Ability to drive and have access to a car
  • Flexible schedule, occasional evening and weekend hours may be required to accommodate client needs

JFS of Metrowest is seeking to hire employees with older adult in-home homecare experience with the following requirements:

  • PCA qualification
  • One year home care experience desired
  • Availability on short notice to take assignments
  • Reliable transportation and valid drivers license
  • In good health-physical exam and TB screening mandatory
  • Fluent English/good communications skills. Multilingual a plus (Spanish and Portuguese. Also Mandarin Chinese)
  • (2) work references in the healthcare industry
  • Must enjoy working with the elderly population
  • Most work is during the day Monday-Fridays with very flexible hours
  • Flexibility a plus

JFS Supports Our Veterans
JFS has a commitment with our partner agencies to ensure
no veteran is left behind.

According to CBS News, U.S. military families are going hungry at alarming rates. CBS News reported on a study that found nearly 40% of active-duty service members are facing food insecurity, forcing them to rely on food banks to feed their families. This is a disgrace! 

To alleviate food insecurity for veterans at the local level, please consider donating to the JFS Veteran Assistance Program, or else to the Military Family Advisory Network to combat food insecurity for veterans and military families at a national level.
Save the Date
Thursday, May 6, 2021, 7:00pm
JFS Max Michelson Humanitarian Awardees:

Diane and Chester Black
JFS' 300+ Volunteers


Contact Gail Gregory, Manager of Volunteer Services and Community Engagement, at for more information.
Older adults need our support more than ever in getting to their medical appointments. Over the last several months, the JFS Patient Navigator Team has worked tirelessly to restore this program, taking into account COVID-19 restrictions and safety measures. With new and creative precautions that prioritize the safety of our volunteers and clients above all else, volunteers make a difference in the lives of older adults in our community by becoming a trusted guide at medical appointments.

As a volunteer, you will receive comprehensive, ongoing training and support. As a Patient Navigator volunteer you will…

  • Help older adults prepare for upcoming medical appointments, review concerns and frame questions
  • Serve as a companion to medical appointments and procedures
  • Facilitate communication between doctor and patient
  • Take notes during the visit
  • Assist in scheduling follow up care and picking up prescriptions

Is your old car ready to go? It’s been good to you over the years, so why not let it do one last good thing? Support YOUR community
by donating your old vehicle to JFS of Metrowest! 

Our partners, CARS (Charitable Adult Rides & Services) will help you will all the details. Click to learn more!

Give today and partner with JFS to improve the lives of over 7,000 people in our community each year
Thank you to Diane, Joe, Malvina, and all who are partnering with JFS to Accelerate Social, Academic and Health Equity in our community.

Your help is needed - get involved today!
JFS of Metrowest | 508-875-3100 | |