Serving the Jewish Community With the Partners in Caring Model

By Sherry Birnbaum

Jewish Communal Service Association of North America (JCSA), Winter 2010

In 1998, while working at Westchester Jewish Community Services (WJCS) as a line social worker, I was asked to start a bereavement group at the synagogue where a friend served as president. The synagogue had been awarded a small grant from UJA-Federation of New York to bring a social worker "on-site" to provide services to the congregants. At that time, this concept was quite innovative as there was little direct interaction between the synagogue community and WJCS. Our agency saw this effort as a way to 'define' the "J" in our name, as well as a natural expansion of our community-based programs, enabling us to bring WJCS services into familiar surroundings in the Jewish community. We had been providing services to the Westchester community in schools, storefronts, and commercial buildings for years. Why not in a synagogue? We began with one group in one synagogue. That success led other synagogues in the next year to request and obtain small grants from UJA-Federation for their own on-site social workers.

Topic: Congregations and Synagogues, Jewish Federations, Social Work, Allocations, Death and Mourning, Emotional Support, Synagogues and Congregations

Name of Publication: Journal of Jewish Communal Service

Editor: Naron Chalew, Gail

Volume/Issue: Vol.85/No.1

Page Number(s): 36-37

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Genre: Article

Coverage: New York, New York , United States

Language: English

Copyright Holder: Publisher

Copyright Information: Download for personal use, freely distribute link

Bibliographic Information:
Birnbaum, Sherry. Serving the Jewish Community With the Partners in Caring Model. Journal of Jewish Communal Service. Jewish Communal Service Association of North America (JCSA). Winter 2010: 36-37.


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