Jewish Family Services
Jewish Family Services (JFS) links Jewish families to community resources, both Jewish and Secular. With our specialized staff and volunteers, JFS offers a variety of services and programs to the Jewish Communities of St. Joseph county in Indiana and the greater Michiana area.
Although JFS is not a full social service agency we do provide a wide variety of programs and services that strive to improve the lives of our community members while fostering Jewish communal experiences.
Who do we serve?
JFS focuses on providing services to those within our community who are Jewish. Though many of our programs are geared specifically towards our senior community members, we also provide services and programs for all those in our Jewish Community.
What services do we offer?
JFS provides a wide range of services including: assessment and agency referrals to community agencies, access to a Kosher Food Pantry, transportation to medical and social service appointments, advocacy, wellness checks/daily phone calls, and many more.
What programs do we provide?
The majority of our programs are open and all are welcome to attend. These programs include, but are not limited to: Community Lunches (Holiday as well as Lunch & Learns) , on-site Jewish programming at senior living community centers, Babies, Tots and Blocks play group, and Psycho-educational programs.
Jewish Family Service Staff
We pride ourselves on our ability to help those in our community. We can't do it alone though, it's thanks to volunteers, community members, and staff that Jewish Family Services is successful. If you would like to know how you too can help, please feel free to contact one of our Jewish Family Service Staff members.
Our Jewish Family Services staff includes Director, Lizzie Fagen, MSW, CDA and Jewish Family Services Associates Rowan Kelley and Nancy Kennedy. In addition to staff we have a community based Jewish Family Services Advisory Board that works directly with our staff and volunteers to provide services to the Jewish members of the Michiana community.
Kosher Food Pantry
Our Kosher Food Pantry provides non-perishable Kosher goods to members of our Jewish community. In addition to basic nutritional staples, we try to have holiday goods on hand as well, such as Matzo. For more information on what we carry please visit our complete list here.
JFS, with the help of our volunteers, offers daily phone calls to individuals who might need a friendly check-in call or just a brief daily contact through the Person-to-Person calling program. Contact the Jewish Federation if you or someone you know could benefit from this service.
Programming at Tanglewood & Waterford Senior Living Communities.
Throughout the year, the Jewish Federation coordinates programs at Tanglewood and Waterford for all Jewish seniors living in senior residential communities. From September through May programs are scheduled three times a month at Tanglewood with holiday themes as well as art, fitness, and music. Holiday programs are also scheduled throughout the year at both Tanglewood and Waterford's facilities. All seniors are welcome, and you do not need to be a resident of either Senior Residential Communities to participate. For more information visit our Community Calendar.
Community and Holiday Lunches
The Jewish Federation hosts two lunches a month through JFS. Our lunch programs offer a hot Kosher meal to those in our community while exploring social service topics and celebrating Jewish holidays. Each month, September through May, we host one Holiday/Birthday Lunch and one Lunch and Learn. For a schedule of these lunches please visit our Community Calendar.
Yom I'yyun: Day of Learning
Once a year, in the fall, JFS sponsors a day of learning to take place at the Jewish Federation. During the day of learning we invite a speaker to present to us information on a topic of social awareness that is relevant to us in today's society. We are then joined by Rabbis from our community who share insight on what we can learn on the subject from the Torah and Talmudic studies. Subjects we have covered in the past include: Dealing with Chronic Stress, Bullying, and Living with Depression.
Jewish Family Services offers transportation services to our Community members who are in need of rides to medical and social service appointments as well as rides to select Federation programs at the Kurt and Tessye Simon Community Building, which include:
Our transportation service is staffed by a part-time Federation staff members, as well as volunteer drivers from our community.
In order to access services, please contact the Federation at least 7 days before a scheduled appointment.
The name, address, telephone number and time of the appointment will be needed in order to schedule a driver. Transportation rides are available Monday through Friday from 8:30am - 5:00pm. Transportation Services are not available on the Jewish Sabbath (Shabbat), Sundays (unless a program falls on a Sunday) and Jewish holidays.