Issue 99 | July 2023
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It’s Time for Camp at JF&CS!

Children, youth and their families came out to pick up brand new donated camp essentials at our first summer camp shop on June 20 and 21. Through the generosity of our donors, campers had a great selection of items from which to choose. We had it all, from duffle bags to sleeping bags, swim goggles to clothing. We even had  $75 Walmart gift cards! Each child and youth walked away with everything needed to enjoy an incredible summer of fun in the sun.

Sending a child or teen to camp can be prohibitively expensive for many of the families we support. Offering their child a camp experience is a luxury that most of our clients simply cannot afford.

Thanks to generous donors such as National Council House of Jewish Women Canada (NCJWC) Toronto Chapter, Camp Tamakwa, Stephen Bloomberg & Robyn Mendelson and their daughter Dylan, Downtown Jewish Community School, and Jeremy and Jo-anne Cole and family, we were able to ensure over 200 kids were well-equipped with everything they need for summer camp this year. Many of the children will be attending camp thanks to funding from JF&CS’ Camp Subsidies Program.

Help us continue sending children and youth to summer camp – to gain new friends, a love of outdoors, and the chance to connect with their culture and community. Please donate by clicking here or attending our live storytelling event on August 24 – Cringe Worthy. Proceeds raised from the event will provide support for the Jewish Camp Subsidies Program.

Continuing to Deliver Dignity to Holocaust Survivors

Over the last two months, JF&CS, in partnership with UJA Federation, has planned and hosted two parlour events in support of our Holocaust survivor services. These events were generously hosted at Lavender Grace located on Dufferin; the first event in May was co-hosted by JF&CS board member, Lindsay Detsky and her sister Courtney Fireman, and the second event in June was co-hosted by Faye Bielak and Audrey Newman. 

Lisa Kronenberg (Manager of Hospice and Holocaust Survivor Services at JF&CS) was the keynote speaker at these events. Lisa shared passionately about the work of her team and the positive impact our clinical services and financial support have on the lives of Survivors. She then led a Q&A with Survivor, Advocate, and Co-Chair of JF&CS' Committee for Needy Holocaust Survivors, Pinchas Gutter. Pinchas, a true hero, shared some of his personal memories and why it is so important to support and advocate for Survivors today.

To date, JF&CS has received $76,459 in donations to support the medical, dental and basic needs of the 800+ Survivors living in poverty in Toronto. If you would like to help support JF&CS in delivering dignity to Holocaust survivors, please click here.

Cultivating Crops at Dawne’s Garden

JF&CS has been working with Shoresh Toronto to support our clients in learning valuable gardening and nutrition skills. Since the beginning of June, Dawne’s Garden, located in the garden of the Kiever Synagogue in the Kensington Market area, has been lovingly cultivated and cared for in anticipation of its fall harvest. 

Clients participating in the program have watched as the seeds they planted in the spring have begun to grow and flourish into beautiful flowers and delicious fruits and vegetables. Soon they will get to enjoy the fruits of their labour, as they harvest delicious beans, lettuce, wild strawberries and more!

Dawne’s Garden programming fosters crucial community-building and connection for our more isolated clients. Through Dawne’s Garden, our participants develop a rich connection to nature, draw on Jewish teachings and values, and receive increased access to healthy food. 

JF&CS Creates a Safe Space for All at Toronto Pride

June was Pride Month in Toronto, and JF&CS was proud to participate in Pride activities as we do every year. Throughout the month, we hosted and posted fun activities and learning opportunities for staff and our social media followers.

Learning opportunities were presented and designed to provide a foundational understanding of Pride-related terminology, how to be a supportive ally, and education on queer and trans history. Staff learned about queer Jewish authors and content creators, local programming, important Ontario legislation, and much more.  

We rounded out the month by once again marching in Toronto’s Pride Parade, an event in which we have been participating for years. We are proud to be an agency that is open, safe and ready to support the Jewish LGBTQIA2S+ community each and every day.

Celebrating Our Children and Youth in Care

Every year, JF&CS shows our gratitude for our incredible resource families who provide support, kindness, love, and commitment to our children and youth in care. This year, our annual end-of-year celebration took place on June 7 at Playtime Bowl. 

Joining our resource families and Children in Care/Resourse team at the celebration were JF&CS CEO Talyah Breslin, Director of Child Welfare Heather Shimkovitz, and JF&CS Board Member Mark Shiner. Over 30 children and youth in care, family members, staff and board members were in attendance. 

These events never fail to evoke plenty of smiles and laughs as we recognize the meaningful connection between our agency, our children and youth in care, and their caregivers and families. It was so special to be able to celebrate another incredible year with everyone!


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Jewish Family and Child Service | 4600 Bathurst St, 1st Floor, Toronto, ON   M2R 3V3
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