Community Generously Pledges to Support Needs in Cleveland and Around the World

February 28, 2011 at 4:54 pm | Posted in Press Releases | Leave a comment

The Super Sunday phone-a-thon on February 27, in support of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland’s 2011 Campaign for Jewish Needs, had a goal for the day of securing 1,800 gifts.  The goal was surpassed with 1,860 donors raising $666,908.  KeyBank, a gold sponsor, was matching new and increased gifts.

Approximately 500 volunteers called community members during the daylong event at the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, 25701 Science Park Drive in Beachwood.  Super Sunday serves as a community rally for the Campaign that will run through May 18, 2011.

The annual Campaign meets social service and educational needs in the Jewish and general communities.  Locally, the Campaign helps more than 40,000 people served by a network of 14 social service agencies and schools.  Four overseas partner agencies also receive Campaign funding to extend help from Cleveland to the global Jewish community.

Super Sunday attracts volunteers of all ages.  There were families represented by three generations, and young adults who said they grew up going to Super Sunday.  Co-chairs of Super Sunday were Lara & Ronnen Isakov, Loren & Keith Israelstam and Meg & Jon Ratner.  Co-chairs of the Community Campaign are Helen & Joseph Feldman, Karen & Ira Levinsky and Sandy Seiger.  Gary L. Gross is general chair of the 2011 Campaign for Jewish Needs and Michael Siegal is board chair of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland.  Sponsors of Super Sunday were KeyBank (Gold) and Patrons – Cleveland Jewish News and Contempo Cuisine.

For more information about the Campaign, or to make a pledge, visit or call 216.593.2841.

– Jewish Federation of Cleveland –


The Jewish Federation of Cleveland is a nonprofit charitable organization that supports social service, educational and humanitarian efforts that improve lives in Cleveland and worldwide.

JFSA set to launch first-of-its-kind treatment program for schizophrenia

February 28, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

JFSA’s Ascentia has been chosen to partner with the Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services Board of Cuyahoga County (ADAMHS Board), and the BeST Practices in Schizophrenia Treatment Center at the Northeastern Ohio Universities Colleges of Medicine and Pharmacy (NEOUCOM) to create FIRST Cuyahoga County, a comprehensive early identification and treatment program for individuals experiencing an initial episode of a psychotic illness.  JFSA was the only agency selected for this program and will start in March.

Intensive intervention as soon as possible following a first episode of a schizophrenia spectrum disorder is very important.  Emerging studies suggest that early and aggressive treatment enables a faster, more complete recovery from schizophrenia at considerably lower costs than customary treatment.

“FIRST Cuyahoga County is a recovery-oriented treatment that focuses on helping the individual and the family,” says Debbie Chickering, Executive Director of Ascentia. “Shared decision making, resiliency training, and staying engaged in life are important components of program.” The program will include case management, employment and family support.

For more information on the program, please contact Debbie Chickering at 216-504-6421. 


February 25, 2011 at 2:47 pm | Posted in Press Releases | Leave a comment

Great visuals – all ages, extremely colorful, huge room of volunteers making calls to raise funds to help those in need.

WHAT: Super Sunday, the Jewish Federation of Cleveland’s annual community-wide phone-a-thon that kicks off the community portion of the 2011 Campaign for Jewish Needs. Hundreds of individuals and families are expected for this upbeat event that generates thousands of pledges in support of the Campaign, which funds programs in the Jewish and general communities.

The Federation’s 14 local partner agencies and four international partners, funded in part by the annual Campaign, ensure that thousands of people in Cleveland, and several thousand more around the world, have access to the resources they need such as food, safe housing, school subsidies, job training, and mental health services – thanks to the generosity of thousands of donors.

WHEN: Sunday, February 27, 2011

9 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Children’s activities, 1:30 – 4:00 p.m.

WHERE: Jewish Federation of Cleveland’s Mandel Building, 25701 Science Park Drive, Beachwood

WHO: Hundreds of volunteers, including General Campaign Chair Gary L. Gross and Super Sunday Co-Chairs: Lara & Ronnen Isakov, Loren & Keith Israelstam and Meg & Jon Ratner. The event is open to the entire community.

WHY: Super Sunday is an energizing day to help the Campaign for Jewish Needs achieve its fundraising and participation goals. These last few years, the needs of the community have greatly increased. The Campaign helps feed the hungry, care for the elderly, aid the disadvantaged, and ensures a vibrant Jewish future in Cleveland and around the world. Volunteers making calls will ask for pledges of support and also, if needed, will be referring people to the Federation’s confidential Information and Referral line where people can request assistance.

MORE: Hyla Winston, on the weekend, at 216.314.5248 (cell) for more information.




The Jewish Federation of Cleveland is a nonprofit charitable organization that supports social service, educational and humanitarian efforts that improve lives in Cleveland and worldwide.

Stories from Beit She’an – Alex Kadis

February 25, 2011 at 11:33 am | Posted in Stories from Beit She'an | Leave a comment
Alex Kadis in Beit She’an teaching English through cooking class.

Dear Friends,

Shalom from Beit She’an!

My name is Alex Kadis, and I am a member of a ten-month-long volunteer program called OTZMA (“power” in Hebrew). During the next few months, we will continue to volunteer in the community of Beit She’an and the surrounding Valley Emek HaMayanot (“Valley of Springs”), doing our best to fulfill the needs of the people who live here.

One of my favorite projects is our after-school chug, “Cooking in English with OTZMA.” (There is no direct translation for the word “chug” the closest I’ve come up with is “extracurricular activity.”) Like many of the things we do in Beit She’an, our program gives children the opportunity to interact with native English speakers and to communicate with people who intuitively know the language. We have been told over and over that Beit She’an, a city on the periphery, doesn’t have a single teacher whose first language is English. That isn’t to say that the teachers here aren’t qualified, far from it – but apparently the situation makes it difficult to help children learn to love the language.

The chug is run by three OTZMAnikim: myself, Rebecca (Becca) Bigman and Lindsay Strauss; along with a soldier and our good friend, Moriah Junger. To make it official, our mentor here in Beit She’an, Chen Ben Ezra, got each of us our own apron with our names on it. Mine’s pink. Chen absolutely loves pointing that out whenever she can.

Kids making pizza

Children learning English while making pizza in Beit She’an.

Our first week, we made pizza with our students teaching them all of the ingredients in English and a few of the actions – like, “to mix.” I’m fairly sure that Israel is the only country where children put olives on their pizza. Becca taught the kids a song about a moose that likes juice. Moriah acted as our translator and official cheerleader. Lindsay and I baked the pizzas and ran the kitchen. We played games and generally tried to just have as much fun as we could. It was challenging to get some of the kids to open up, but once they did, they were smiling from ear to ear.

The more we’ve cooked with the children, the more I’ve realized that the main purpose of the English cooking chug isn’t really to teach English. We’ve been told that the kids who attend our program also come from difficult homes. They benefit greatly from the love and attention we give them, even if it is only for two hours a week.

We have run the program twice so far. The second week was “Breakfast for Dinner” – French toast and eggs. While things got pretty crazy, and we ate more than our fair share of eggshells, the kids seemed to love it as much as we did.

Volunteering can be tiring and working with children can be stressful. But it’s well worth it in my mind. The chance to make a difference in their lives, no matter how small, is worth the challenges involved.

Until next time…l’hitraot!

Alex Kadis

Guest Post: Jill Miller Zimon Appreciates Inquiry

February 22, 2011 at 11:34 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Jill Miller Zimon

Appreciative Inquiry: The Wrap-Up (for now)

(Reprinted with permission from

Last week, I participated in the day-long Appreciative Inquiry Summit for Women’s Leadership.  The Jewish Federation of Cleveland convened the event with the following aspirations in mind:

Strengthening our Jewish community, building meaningful connections, and creating valuable experiences through opportunities that utilize the unique strengths and resources of women and maximize our personal growth and leadership potential.

Previously, I wrote about my anticipation of the day and followed up with a morning and afternoon dispatch from the Summit.

Now, I’d like to offer a few thoughts, looking back but also acknowledging that it is way too soon to fully appreciate – no pun intended – the ramifications of this unique and dare I say breakthrough gathering.

From the moment I walked in the room… (Read more at Jill’s blog)

JFSA Expect Respect: The Road to No Abuse is to KNOW Abuse

February 17, 2011 at 12:41 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Did you know the highest risk of sexual assualt for women is in their first 2 months of college? Jewish Family Service Association’s Families at Risk Advisory Committee, in association with Women’s Philanthropy of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland presented an evening of important facts and personal stories about teen dating abuse on Feburary 8th. “Expect Respect: Bring A Teen You Care About” featured leaders from JFSA’s Expect Respect teen dating violence prevention program. Their message on how to break the cycle of abuse can be seen in this video on Take a moment to listen and share with family and friends.

If you or anyone you know may be in an abuse relationship, JFSA can help. Please call 216-292-3999.

JFSA Lifeline “Saved My Mother’s Life”

February 15, 2011 at 4:51 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Linda Dolce’s mother is 89 years old and insists on living at home. She wears a JFSA Lifeline pendant and because of that, Linda has the peace of mind knowing her mother is safe. A few weeks ago, Linda’s mother fell in her kitchen. She pushed the Lifeline button and help quickly arrived. Linda lives a half hour away and says she wouldn’t of even known about the fall.

“The device absolutely saved her life,” Linda recalls. “Lifeline is critical to any aging adult who isn’t stable.”

JFSA has been providing the Lifeline unit for over 25 years—to help families have peace of mind and to help older adults enjoy independence and safety in their own home. JFSA Lifeline is unique because it is the only medical response system of its kind endorsed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. There is also no long term contract.

“We can’t always be there to protect the ones we love,” says Maxine Margolis, JFSA Lifeline Coordinator. “But Lifeline can. It’s priceless peace of mind.

Right now, you or a loved one can enjoy special savings on Lifeline. JFSA is offering FREE INSTALLATION (A $40 value) and ONE MONTH FREE SERVICE (up to $40 value) through 3/31/2011. Call Maxine at 216-378-3439 for more information.

Population Study is Making News

February 11, 2011 at 11:09 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

The Cleveland Jewish News is keeping the community aware of the upcoming Greater Cleveland Jewish Population Study. Read their recent coverage from November 19, 2010 and November 26, 2010. Visit the Federation at for more information on this important measure of our community!

Women Building Bridges March

February 1, 2011 at 1:44 pm | Posted in Upcoming Events | Leave a comment
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On behalf of our partners in the region of Beit Shean/Emek HaMayanot, we invite you to participate in a Cleveland delegation to the fifth Women Building Bridges March, joining an expected 5,000 women from Israel’s Arab and Jewish sectors and Jordan to march together in friendship.

The conference will be held on Thursday, March 10. The march will be on Friday, March 11, at the Old Bridge site adjacent to Kibbutz Gesher on the Bridge for Peace between Jordan and Israel. The dates coincide with the 100th observance of the International Women’s Day. Program highlights will include a joint march through the landscapes of the Jordan River, a bike trip to the Island of Peace, workshops and activities directed towards the women participants as well as performances, sports competitions, opportunities for dialogue and a special commemorative ceremony (see schedule for more information).

Additional partners supporting the march include the Jewish National Fund, the Israeli Ministry of Culture and Sport, the Israeli Ministry of Regional Development, the Authority for the Development of the Galilee and the Israel State Department.

We look forward to your response indicating your interest in participating with us in the Women Building Bridges March and to organizing an extended itinerary for your visit. Please RSVP your interest to Sally Levine at the Federation – or 216.593.2900, ext. 305.

Sincerely, Cindy Attias, P2K Chair Suellen Kadis, Women’s Philanthropy Chair Women Building Bridges March

About the March

In 1994, upon the signing of the peace accords, Sheikh Hussein Bridge was opened for passage of civilians and merchandise between Israel and Jordan. The Valley of the Springs Regional Council viewed this as an opportunity for initiating contacts and generating cooperative working relations with its neighbors from the east, and for mutual ties between the nations on both sides of the border.

The first international women’s march of this kind in the region – Women’s March for Peace – was held in 1999. The march took place along the Israel – Jordan border, along the length of the Jordan River, and approximately 1,500 Israeli women – Jews and Arabs alike – participated. A delegation of women from Jordan arrived and the women marched the length of the route together. Two other marches followed thereafter. The last march was held two years ago when approximately 3,000 women participated from all sectors together with 30 women from Jordan and retired General Mansoor Abu-Rashad, Director of the Institute for Peace and Regional Economic Development in Amman.

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