Issue 34 | January 2015

read this issue online at

It Began Like a Fairytale...

Told by a JF&CS client in her own words.
"A charming professional meets a lovely woman. They fall in love, marry, have two beautiful children and live happily ever after!  Well, not quite.  Although there is a happy ending … of sorts.
I left Israel for my dream life with a person I believed was worth deserting my home, family, friends, profession and culture.  The dream was gradually and methodically shattered over a twenty year period during which I quietly and obediently suffered psychological and financial abuse by my husband.  I was disrespected, mistrusted and eventually disconnected from outside communication and financial support.  Every two years or so I was forced to move and restart in a different home while battling to give my children a sense of stability.  We always had 'just what we needed'.  Since I do not have any family of origin in Toronto and no other familial support, I felt extremely lonely and deeply saddened. Regretfully, I did not insist on maintaining a connection with the local Jewish and Israeli community which further alienated and prevented  me from receiving any help with my struggles.  Only the love for my children kept me sane. I vowed to leave my husband when my youngest finished high school, and I did. It was my first step towards some freedom, though it broke my heart and tore me apart when I found I was incapable of helping my grown children financially.  
A friend offered me a place in her basement where I lived for a short time.  I then rented a room in someone's house who drained whatever emotional power was left in me; I had to move out.  I stayed with my oldest child for a while which gave me some relief and finally I found a tiny bachelor where I felt more at home with a bed, table, two chairs, and my books.  I sold whatever little else I owned for much needed cash.  I worked three jobs, seven days a week and was very tired, but more settled and in peace. Unfortunately, even that didn't last for long as my landlord raised my rent to a sum that didn't make sense for 'just a room'. I once again harnessed my strength and resumed looking for a place to live, perhaps with a roommate. Everything was so expensive…
And then, it happened.  The crushing weight of my lonely, desperate life and dire straits combined with thoughts about my future and my children’s’ lives, all suddenly collapsed on me. I made a phone call that completely changed my life's course.   
An intake worker at Jewish Family & Child interviewed me and sent me on the very same day to a support group. I continued to see a counsellor and then joined another group which helped me release my long-time buried pain. JF&CS also provided me with beneficial workshops which helped me reconstruct my personal, as well my professional affairs.  But the most significant breakthrough definitely occurred with the JF&CS and Kehilla Rental Assistance Project. I immediately pursued the required steps for qualifying into the program.  Without JF&CS and The Kehilla Residential Program, I would  have probably continued to be a nomad for the rest of my life. But now, the wondering Jewess has finally got both feet firmly on the ground!  Thanks to the financial support of the generous donors in the Jewish community, I now live in a nice and affordable place that for the first time I feel is my home.  Furthermore, I don’t just survive anymore; I thrive.  I now work as an educator and interpreter within the large, extended family that adopted me, and to whom I definitely belong - The Jewish Community."
Monthly Mitzvah Makers
Monthly Mitzvah Makers

Near the end of 2014, JF&CS launched our new monthly giving program and we've had an exciting response.  Numerous community members have chosen to take advantage of this philanthropic program designed for those who wish to help vulnerable children and families in our community on a consistent basis.  Monthly commitments provide stable funding to advance our vital programs and services and provide lasting solutions to abuse, poverty, isolation and mental illness.


Benefits of becoming a Monthly Mitzvah Maker:

  • Monthly giving is affordable and allows you to make your gift through manageable regular payments.
  • Automatic credit card donations make giving convenient and save on administrative costs, allowing your dollars to go further.
  • A one-time, cumulative tax receipt is sent in January/February of the following year.
  • You’ll receive advance event notification, reserved seating at our Annual General Meeting and other special incentives.
  • We will recognize you in a special area of our Annual Report.
  • You will receive a quarterly Monthly Mitzvah Maker newsletter.
  • You can modify your monthly commitment at any time

Whether you are a current donor or wish to become one, anyone can join the Monthly Mitzvah Makers online here, by emailing or calling 416.638.7800 x 6999.

The Just-A-Second Shop

Open six days a week, the JF&CS-operated Just-A-Second Shop offers new and gently used clothing and small household items at very reasonable prices. Proceeds from the shop support the many ways JF&CS serves the community, with a special focus on sending children to Jewish day and overnight camps. Clients of our Agency are able to select a certain number of items at no charge. 

Your donation of new and gently-used clothing and small household items in good condition is a great source of help to people in need in our community. Please drop off your clean, properly-bagged items at one of our bright yellow collection boxes, located across the GTA:

  • Associated Hebrew School, 300 Atkinson Avenue, Thornhill
  • Sherman Campus, 4588 Bathurst Street (back parking lot)
  • Beth Tikvah Synagogue, 3080 Bayview Avenue
  • Beth Tzedec Congregation, 1700 Bathurst Street, Toronto
  • Just-A-Second Shop, 4117 Bathurst Street, Toronto

Questions about donating to the Shop? Call 416.638.7800 x 6999 or email 





Jewish Family & Child
4600 Bathurst Street, 1st Floor, Toronto, ON M2R 3V3
416-638-7800 | |


Privacy Policy Visit Our Website  |  Unsubscribe