Jewish Family Service finds new home in Park City
Programs offered by Jewish Community Service
All are available to the public and non-denominational
• Gleeful Choir
Established in 2017, the Gleeful Choir is a free choir for dementia clients and their caregivers.
• Music and Memory
Established in January 2014, Jewish Family Service’s Music & Memory Program is the first of its kind in Utah. It is an innovative and effective tool that provides personalized music playlists to seniors suffering from Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. The music engages the mind and enables these individuals to reconnect with the world and those around them through music-triggered memories.
• Senior Adult Services
Health problems, loneliness or loss can make each day a struggle as one ages. Understanding and communicating can be difficult, but we can help both senior adults and their family members to find options to address their needs.
• Solutions to Senior Hunger
In 2016/17 Jewish Family Service was one of 12 state organizations chosen to participate in the Solutions to Senior Hunger program. This FREE service to help people 50 years and older enroll in the Food Stamps program is available to anyone regardless of background or denomination in Salt Lake, Wasatch, and Summit counties.
• The Lunch Bunch
The Lunch Bunch groups are an outreach program that meets monthly to enjoy lunch, socialization, and education. Contact Hindy Friedman, Hindy@jfsutah.org or 801-746-4334.
• Reimagining Your Life: A Creative Aging Workshop
Jewish Family Service’s Creative Aging Workshop Re-Imagining Your Life is for individuals who would like to find purpose and meaning in the next phase of their lives.
• Creative Aging: One-day Writing Workshops
Jewish Family Service’s Creative Aging One-Day Workshop Listening to Your Inner Voice: A Path to Insight & Clarity is for individuals who would like to find purpose and meaning in the next phase of their lives.
• Parent Plus Program Workshops
Jewish Family Service’s Parent Plus Program is for couples and families who want to strengthen their family relationships. Free, but preregistration is required.
• Writing as a Tool to Cope with Anxiety: A Creative Writing Workshop
Jewish Family Service’s Writing as a Tool to Cope With Anxiety Workshop is for individuals who would like to learn how to settle swirling emotions and calm their minds with writing in a supportive environment.
• Mindful Eating Workshop
Jewish Family Service’s Mindful Eating Workshop is for individuals who would like to have a more balanced, respectful, healthy, and joyful relationship with food and eating.
Counseling is the cornerstone of Jewish Family Service’s programs. We provide mental health services on a sliding fee scale allowing us to reach people at all income levels.
• Safety Net Program
Jewish Family Service is a rare “one stop shop” for EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE. Food pantry, thrift-store vouchers, loans and solutions to senior hunger
• Jewish Community Assistance Programs
There are times in life when we walk a tightrope, trying to keep our balance among life’s unexpected circumstances and hardships. For these times, JFS offers a safety net for members of the Jewish community and those affiliated with it. These include loans, emergency funds, career referrals and support group for individuals and families who are contemplating conversion to Judaism with a focus on Jewish identity, family relations, and life-cycle events.
For information, visit jfsutah.org.
After nearly 10 years of working from a room at the People’s Health Clinic in the Summit County Health Department building, the Park City branch of Jewish Family Service finally has its own permanent office in Prospector.
The interfaith social services nonprofit has moved to 1960 Sidewinder Drive, Suite 103, the former home of the Park City Community Foundation, which is now located at 1918 Prospector Ave.
The new space will complement Jewish Family Services’ Salt Lake City office, Silver said.
“It is a perfect size, and it’s in a perfect place that’s easily accessible to our clients,” said JFS Executive Director Ellen Silver. “People can walk here, or you can ride the bus.”
The space features three counseling rooms, a conference room, a kitchen for staff, and a waiting and play area for kids.
CONNECT Summit County, a mental health nonprofit, is currently using one of the counseling rooms, Silver said.
“The Park City Foundation moved because they needed a larger space, so this all happened a little faster than we expected,” Silver said. “Finding a new space was originally part of our 2020 plan, and once this opened up, we really didn’t want to lose it.”
The local community helped secure the space, according to Silver.
“We formed a Park City task force comprised of locals who helped us get this whole thing together,” she said. “They helped us with fundraising, getting the office together and volunteering to man the reception desk.”
JFS is also funded through the community foundation and receive a matching grant from the Marriott Foundation, Silver said.
“In addition, we have a special contract for a grant with Park City that will help us fund some of our counseling,” she said. “We’ve been overwhelmed by how excited everyone is about us having our own building.”
Silver is grateful for the partnership JFS had with People’s Health Clinic over the past decade.
In 2009, a year after Silver was named JFS executive director, she created an arrangement with Park City Councilor Nann Worel, who was People’s Health Clinic executive director at the time, to allocate a place to see clients, which it did beginning in 2010.
“That partnership continued to be amazing when Beth Armstrong became People’s Health Clinic’s executive director, but we knew we could offer so much more if we had our own space,” Silver said. “We knew we could do a whole lot more in the community if we were able to have our own space.”
Jewish Family Service programs aren’t just for Jewish families, Silver said.
“As one of the oldest nonprofits in Utah — we started in started in Salt Lake City in the late 1800s — we’re proud of the fact that we serve all Utahns,” she said. “And how we do that is by offering affordable mental health services.”
(See accompanying list for services).
JFS offers these services on a sliding scale rate, she said.
“The scale is very liberal, and even with that, 60 percent of our clients pay below the regular $25 fee,” she said. “We are about making sure people who need mental health services get them. So it’s OK if you’re paying $1, $2 or $5. If you’re motivated and continue to seek our services, we’re fine with that.”
While Silver would prefer clients pay something for services, she knows there are circumstances that prevent people from doing so.
“This is why fundraising and grants are important to us,” she said.
In the meanwhile, JFS in Park City looks to increase its staff by adding a second counselor who speaks Spanish and English, according to Silver.
“We have a private donor who came forward and offered to fund another full-time, bilingual counselor for three years,” she said.
The new counselor will work with fellow counselors Amy Edwards, older-adult social worker Alex Mack and bilingual counselor Roxane Cordoa, who split their time between Salt Lake City and Park City, Silver said.
“Once we’re full staffed, then we can plan some other programs,” she said.
Silver isn’t the only JFS staffer who is happy about the new space.
Board President Joy Erickson said as a member of the Park City community, she is aware of the need for affordable mental health services.
“JFS offers a safe, caring, and professional environment for all people,” she said. “Having provided these services in Salt Lake City for many years, I believe JFS is well positioned to offer similar services in the Park City area. This mission is what we believe in as an organization, and as members of our Park City non- profit community.”
For more information, visit jfsutah.org.
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