July 23, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Central Jersey JFS Receives Funds for Groundbreaking Holocaust Survivor Care

Jewish Family Service of Central New Jersey (JFSCNJ) was selected to receive a grant from the Jewish Federations of North America through their recently launched Center for Advancing Holocaust Survivor Care. These grants mark the first time in history that the United States federal government has provided direct funding for Holocaust survivor services. When combined with matching funds from the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest NJ, this award will enable $341,253 in new programming for survivors in the Central NJ area.

The Jewish Federations of North America launched the Center for Advancing Holocaust Survivor Care in the fall of 2015, following an award from the United States Department of Health and Human Services for up to $12 million over five years to advance innovations in person-centered, trauma-informed (PCTI) services for Holocaust survivors in the United States. PCTI care is a holistic approach to service provision that promotes the dignity, strength and empowerment of trauma victims by incorporating knowledge about the role of trauma in victims’ lives into agency programs, policies and procedures.

Of the more than 100,000 Holocaust survivors in the United States, nearly one quarter are aged 85 or older, and one in four lives in poverty. Many live alone and are at risk for social isolation, depression and other physical and mental health conditions stemming from periods of starvation, disease and torture.

“JFSCNJ provides so many services for the people in need in our community; there is no greater task than helping our elderly survivors who are in need. As a second-generation board member, and the child of survivors, I am very proud to be associated with an agency that does so much good work,” said Michael Gottlieb, past JFSCNJ president and current board member.

“As a child of survivors who were able to come to America and be successful, I feel it is our obligation to help those who survived but continue to struggle on a day-to-day basis,” said Eric Harvitt, board member of JFSCNJ, vice president of the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest, and a child of Holocaust survivors.

“Taking care of Holocaust survivors, ensuring that they have their physical and emotional needs met, is of the utmost importance and a fully attainable goal if we continue to work together,” said Mark Wilf, chair of Federations’ National Holocaust Survivor Initiative.

“Grantees of the Center for Advancing Holocaust Survivor Care will lead the charge and help prepare the nation’s Aging Services Network to ensure all Holocaust survivors living below the poverty line have their basic needs met,” said Todd Morgan, vice chair of Federations’ National Holocaust Survivor Initiative.

The Center for Advancing Holocaust Survivor Care promotes these innovative service delivery models together with the expertise of partner organizations including the Association of Jewish Family & Children’s Agencies and the Claims Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany. The grant money is a combination of federal dollars and philanthropic dollars raised by Jewish Federations as part of JFNA’s National Holocaust Survivor Initiative, which seeks to raise $45 million to support the survivor community.

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