Jewish Care launches appeal

February 28, 2010 by Jonny Ucko
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Melbourne’s Jewish Care has launched its 2010 appeal.

Why we ask our community to support our 2010 Annual Appeal

Of the broad range of services we provide, only 75% is funded by government and service fees, leaving an annual shortfall of nearly $10 million.  Many of our services and facilities would not be possible without the gracious assistance of our donors.  As a not-for-profit organisation we rely heavily on the generosity of our donors and volunteers to ensure that our community needs are met 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

Our Annual Appeal target of $2.5 million is absolutely critical to enable us to continue to provide support services to our community.

2010 Annual Appeal Key Messages

Jewish Care receives 5,000 crisis calls a year on issues ranging from youth issues, family breakdown, aged care needs, emergency housing, domestic violence, mental health issues, poverty and violence.

  • o 80 people face homelessness every month
  • o 2,000 households in our community survive on less than $249 per week
  • o 1 in five adults struggle with mental illness
  • o 1 in 10 Jewish Victorians over 65 are affected by dementia
  • o 1 in three families have experienced some form of family violence

These people are our neighbours, our friends, our families.

By caring for clients and their families, we touch the lives of over 30,000 people in our community every year: one out of every two people in our community is touched or affected by Jewish Care in some way.

Giving today – helping tomorrow

Triennial giving, where donors commit to three or more years of funding, can ensure the financial stability of our vital services and enables us to improve program delivery through enhanced planning, service innovation and the development of long range strategic goals.  Jewish Care is grateful to those donors who have already made this commitment. During this year’s Annual Appeal, we are asking anyone who can to commit to long term support to enable us to achieve our goal to help the community.

The needs of our community exceed what we are currently able to provide:

  • o We placed 50 jobseekers this past year – but 300 still seek employment
  • o We doubled the disability housing we currently provide to 36; but there are at least 100 more with unmet accommodation needs
  • o We guided nearly 160 people into temporary, transitional or permanent accommodation, but there are still another 80 facing housing crisis every month
  • o We provided 215 days of respite for families with children with disabilities, but there is demand 365 days a year
  • o We provided a much needed weekly break for 25 carers of people with dementia, but there are hundreds more in need
  • o 500 older people visited the active living centre every week, but thousands more could benefit from our Healthy Ageing Programs
  • o Last year, we distributed $150,000 in emergency aid – but what about this year?  (Note: According to the 2006 Census, 35% of the Victorian Jewish community earn less than $1,000 a week).

What your donation can achieve:

$1,400 A month of daily home care visits for a frail person living alone

$5,000 A month of emergency housing for a family at risk

$21,000  A year of art therapy to help people with a mental illness

$30,000 A week of groceries for 110 families in crisis

$45,000  10 pressure-relief beds to provide comfort for elderly residents

$50,000 New physiotherapy equipment for our Healthy Ageing Program

$75,000 Training for 200 new volunteers

$150,000  100 extra days of respite for families of children with a disability

Case studies of people in crisis who turn to Jewish Care

We receive approximately 5,000 crisis calls a year – every one of these calls contains a story:

o Benjamin, 23, arrived at Jewish Care asking for money. He was clearly unwell, suffering from a mental illness and estranged from his family who live interstate. He was also about to lose his accommodation at a rooming house which was closing down.  With Benjamin’s permission we were able to link him with specialist psychiatric services which actually resulted in a hospital admission. He now receives specialist out-patient psychiatric support and he has moved to another rooming house.  One of his goals is to be well enough to join Jewish Care’s mental health psycho-social groups so that he can feel connected through the activities and outings.

  • o Joe, Michelle and their two little girls called Jewish Care when they found themselves facing eviction, with no idea where they were going to live or how they would be able to buy food and nappies.  Last year’s global financial crisis led to the end of Joe’s fledgling business and plummeted him into a spiral of depression and ill health. With two small children under school age and another pregnancy, this family are struggling to survive.  Joe and Michelle accepted immediate assistance to help to pay for rent, nappies and groceries.  Joe also has an appointment at our recruitment and training service, Always Moving Forward, while in the longer-term, Joe and Michelle are also considering meeting with our financial counsellor for assistance in addressing their debts.
  • o Miriam, aged 40, moved interstate to Melbourne with her three school-aged children to escape her physically and sexually violent husband.  Miriam’s oldest child is a particularly angry and aggressive teenager and the middle child is becoming quiet and withdrawn. As if this weren’t enough, Miriam’s youngest child, aged 10, has a disability. Miriam is a religious woman, however, and this places additional financial pressures – observing Chagim,  affording kosher food, and having to send her children to Jewish schools and to live in proximity to the school in an area where rents keep on rising.  Miriam is working with her Jewish Care counsellor to deal with the trauma of abuse and to work on her parenting skills. She has also started to use our Children’s Respite House a few weekends per year, to enable her to focus on herself and her older children.
  • o Sarah is constantly worried about her mother Rochel, 84, a Holocaust survivor. Rochel’s husband, Sam, passed away five years ago but for the whole family the loss is very fresh.  Recently, Rochel has started ringing Sarah up to 10 times a day and last week she forgot the kugel in the oven for the second time. Sarah decided to call Jewish Care to find out about residential care for her mother and was surprised to find out about the different options available so that could she independently in her own home – like help with shopping, courses in physiotherapy and other programs at Jewish Care’s Active Living Centre in Kooyong Rd.  However, Rochel’s past experiences, now sharpened with age, made her distrustful of strangers and of being told what to do. We are working with Sarah and Rochel to make Rochel feel safe and ready to accept outside help.

About Jewish Care

Founded on a strong caring ethos, Jewish Care continues to build on its 160-year history of providing vital support for people in need. Today, we are guided by the same ideals of compassion and understanding that saw the establishment of Montefiore Homes for the Aged in 1848 and Australian Jewish Welfare Society in 1939. Our core values of charity, kindness, family and respect are steeped in age-old wisdom, emanating from a rich heritage of Jewish tradition.

That tradition continues today. Our experience in providing essential support to the Jewish community gives us a deep understanding of past hardships and future aspirations. This insight allows Jewish Care to design culturally sensitive care packages that honour the unique requirements of each individual. We help people discover the tools they need to lead fulfilling lives, and to celebrate their place in our community.

Over time, Jewish Care has grown with the community. Our services have expanded to respond to the ever changing needs and pressures of modern life. We understand the issues our community has faced in the past and the particular challenges that exist today.

Our services reflect this understanding and provide practical and spiritual support wherever it is needed. This approach will always remain the cornerstone of our organisation and is highly valued by all who come to Jewish Care.

We are a first point of contact for people experiencing unemployment, homelessness, emotional and financial difficulties, mental health issues, and those living with a disability. As ever, we remain dedicated to providing professional, dignified aged care. But it is not just the vulnerable we help. Jewish Care provides employment and training services for all sectors of the workforce, financial products for businesses and individuals, and innovative programs to impart life skills and promote the potential of our youth. We take a proudly whole-of-life approach to supporting every person through every stage of their life, regardless of their situation. Everything we do is aimed at improving individuals’ quality of life and serving our diverse community.

My Community. My Choice.

Jewish Care belongs to the community – each of us owners and stakeholders. With ownership comes responsibility. We each play a role in ensuring the care of those in need.

The strength of our community is in our diversity and in our togetherness – young and old, rich and poor, healthy and sick, religious and unaffiliated. Together we are one.

Jewish Care’s mission speaks to all of us, not just the vulnerable. Through the delivery of the highest quality of care coupled with real choices and real options we will transform Jewish Care from a provider of necessity to a provider of choice.


One Response to “Jewish Care launches appeal”
  1. sonia says:

    We are a married couple in our late sixties./ early seventies on a full government pension. Unfortunately we are still paying rent to a private landlord, but our meagre savings will run out in the not too distant future. We are becoming increasingly depressed about all this and very worried about our future. We have our name down for aged accommodation, with Glen Eira and other non profit organisations but it seems there are many more deserving people far ahead of us in the queue. We do have adult children, but they are not in a position to help. Where do we go from here?

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