Heartfelt Client Stories Celebrated at Community of Giving

December 11, 2022

Heartfelt Client Stories Celebrated at Community of Giving

On Nov 29, Giving Tuesday, more than 400 viewers joined JF&CS for a journey into the lives of three clients who are supported by JF&CS services. Hosted by Atlanta media maven, Mara Davis, the event brought the focus back to the client stories that JF&CS used to share at Community of Caring.

When asked why Mara wanted to host Community of Giving, she said she felt it was important for her to be part of this event, especially as a Jewish woman and a celebrity.

“People need to hear how Jewish people and Jewish organizations are helping the community,” she said.

“We know how we are helping but the whole community needs to know too. There is so much antisemitism everywhere. One way to combat antisemitism is to show how we as a community are helping,” she said.

Allison Holmes, Events Manager, was happy to see the great turnout.

“This year’s Community of Giving was a huge success, and we are so appreciative to our entire community for their participation and support! We brought the program back to what we do best, which is having our clients tell their impactful stories of empowerment,” said Allison.

The program included stories from Lev, a holocaust survivor and brilliant engineer from Ukraine, who had to start a new life in his 40s in the US in the 1980s. He shared how JF&CS has helped him navigate life in Atlanta as a Holocaust survivor and as an older adult in need of supportive services through Aviv Older Adult Services.

Marissa told the story of her 7-year-old daughter, Mia, who had undiagnosed ADHD, anxiety and dyslexia, and was struggling at school. They came to JF&CS and through the services Mia received through the Horwitz-Zusman Child & Family Center, she was able to get the support she needed to restore her confidence at home and at school.

Bob and Sarah Kazmier, parents of Hank and Laura, told their story of the challenges of having three children with developmental disabilities, and how their lives were forever changed when Sarah suffered a stroke. They needed a safe place for their adult children to live and work. They found Intellectual & Developmental Disabilities Services (IDDS) at JF&CS, which has helped their Hank and Laura to live as independently as possible, and be a part of a community of their peers. They have a profound sense of relief knowing their adult children are well-cared and happy with JF&CS services.

Several groups created watch parties to enjoy the event together. After watching the program, they shared that even though they were familiar with JF&CS, they had no idea of how many services were offered, and the variety of people who were helped by them. Tracey Grant and Beth Friedman co-hosted a Community of Giving watch party, attended by Host Committee Chair, Elana Satisky, and many others

"There was such a great energy watching together, knowing everyone there was excited about JF&CS and supporting a cause. Watching as a group felt so meaningful," said Tracey.

"Even as a volunteer, you only get to see some aspects of JF&CS, this was great beacuse you got to know the faces of the people who are being helped. Several people commented that they did not know JF&CS had so many services," she said.

Thank you to our wonderful Event Chairs, Carolyn Oppenheimer & Rick Lenner and Carrie & David Poline and to our Host Committee Chairs, Arlene Marcus, Elana & Mark Satisky, and Stacy & Stuart Shapiro, who shared their stories and how JF&CS inspired them to give and get involved.

The Halpern-Oppenheimer Family Foundation was our Diamond Sponsor, First Horizon Foundation, Carolyn Oppenheimer & Rick Lenner, and Publix Super Markets Charities were all Platinum Sponsors. Silver Sponsors included Aprio, Dentons, Diamond Sky Productions, Jeckil Promotions, Limecrane, and Poline Search Partners.

All funds raised support the JF&CS Annual Campaign.

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