A Lifesaving Plan: Suicide Prevention Safety Planning

When it comes to discussions about suicide, safety planning must be a part of that conversation. Why? Well, as Benjamin Franklin said, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing for failure.” If you experience suicidal thoughts and/or attempted suicide in the past, you are at risk of attempt again. Coming up with a preventative safetyRead More

Depression is Serious

Depression is a difficult and pervasive illness. Many in our community, educated about and knowledgeable of their own experiences with the illness, are struggling . JFS therapists also hear from others, without any history of, or familiarity with, depression, who wonder and fear they are depressed. The reflection below, written by JFS’ Board President, BetsyRead More

So, What is Telemental Health?

by Michelle Beard Telemental health is now synonymous with pandemic life. In New York Times articles and emails from your healthcare provider, health care professionals are encouraging the public to begin, or continue, counseling via telemental health care. But what should you expect when talking to a counselor remotely via telemental health? Generally, only theRead More

Pride Month & Mental Health

This month, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people will celebrate themselves and honor the people who catalyzed the Gay Liberation Movement with the Stonewall Uprising of 1969. Pride month is a time of both self-affirmation and reflection for the queer community. Despite the enormous obstacles the LGBTQ community has overcome to secure their rights,Read More

Virtual Seders: More Traditional Than You Might Think

              By Camila Sobral *The newest member of the JFS staff shares how her family celebrates during coronavirus social distancing My family, like many Jewish families around the world, is celebrating Passover through Zoom. Even before the pandemic, my family couldn’t celebrate together because we all live on differentRead More

Jewish Community Response Volunteer Initiative

The Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans, Jewish Family Service of Greater New Orleans, and the Jewish Endowment Foundation of Louisiana have partnered with a number of area synagogues to create a Jewish community response helpline program for problems related to the novel coronavirus pandemic. Our collective goal is to provide connection during a time ofRead More

COVID-19 Resource Page

JFS is prepared to meet the needs of our community and clients to the fullest and safest extent possible during the COVID-19 outbreak. We are in communication with civic leaders on how to best serve our clients. We strive to maintain operations while prioritizing the health and safety of our clients and staff. To thisRead More

Join us for “The Conversation”

Please join Lake Lawn Metairie Funeral Home and Jewish Family Service of Greater New Orleans for The Conversation, an educational seminar on senior care planning and the importance of ‘conversing’ with family and health care professionals on topics including senior housing, living wills, advance care directives, health care and more. Our special guest speaker isRead More

Jewish Genetic Testing Event

Jewish Genetic Testing Event Date: Thursday, February 6, 2020 Time: 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm Location: Uptown Jewish Community Center Guest Speakers: Debbie Wasserman, MS and Dr. Paul du Treil, OB/GYN. The Victor Center for the Prevention of Jewish Genetic Disease, Touro Infirmary, Jewish Family Service of Greater New Orleans, Jewish Federation of Greater NewRead More

Medicare Open Enrollment and JFS Senior Services

Join Jewish Family Service and New Orleans JCC for a delicious, catered luncheon sponsored by the New Orleans Council on Aging (NOCOA) and the opportunity to learn about the many services offered in our area for the senior population. Carmelita Williams from the NOCOA will provide information on the Council’s Aging and Disability Resource CenterRead More

Beyond Self-Care Day: Prioritizing ‘You’

  by Lauren Rudzis, Development & Communications Coordinator   If there was ever a time to focus on your well-being, well congratulations, today is your day! July 24th is recognized as International Self-Care Day. However, ‘self-care’ can be emphasized beyond it’s designated celebration.   In our busy lifestyles, we find ourselves in a whirlwind ofRead More

Storm Anxieties: Acknowledgment & How to Cope

by Dr. Katie Godshall, LCSW-BACS; Teen Life Counts Program Coordinator   Over the past week, Louisiana geared up for what was forecasted to be a record “rain-event”. Thankfully the impact was minimal in most parts, but the significant effect remains as an invisible weight on the shoulders of many who have experienced damaging hurricanes, storms,Read More

Volunteer with JFS and get the Most out of 2019

  By Lauren Rudzis, Development & Communications Coordinator Looking for a meaningful way to kick-start 2019? Perhaps an activity that makes an impact on the Greater New Orleans community? Consider volunteering with Jewish Family Service of Greater New Orleans (JFS)! By volunteering with JFS, you have the unique opportunity to help others and partner withRead More

Counseling Technique Spotlight: EMDR

By Fran Dinehart, LCSW Social Worker & Case Manager One of my counseling clients came for treatment for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).  A friend drowned during a recent beach trip and since then she had panic attacks around large bodies of water. I took her history, identified her stressors, and together we created a targetingRead More

Inviting Grief into Your Holiday Season: 10 Steps towards a Meaningful Holiday for those Experiencing Grief

      Katie Godshall, LCSW-BACS, JFS Intern Program Supervisor This time of year is usually filled with flustered shopping, indulgent meals, traveling and time spent with our loved ones.  A season full of cheer can also be isolating and difficult if you have lost someone dear.  Whether this is the first holiday since theRead More

Commentary on the #MeToo Social Media Campaign

Cara Zajac Social Work Intern JFS Counseling and Behavioral Health Intern Training Center Social media can be a dangerous place for survivors of sexual assault. The viral awareness campaign “#MeToo” is gaining traction on newsfeeds across the country. The social movement launches conversations about gender based violence into communities on a personal level. Many survivorsRead More

October is National Depression Education and Awareness Month

Candice Rosenblum, LCSW Clinical Social Worker, Northshore “Brian” was battling depression when he sought treatment from Jewish Family Service (JFS) last year. The death of his father triggered painful memories of a difficult childhood spent with a physically and verbally abusive alcoholic father. This behavior often creates a negative sense of self for children. ARead More

National Suicide Prevention Month

September is National Suicide Prevention Month Suicide is currently the second leading cause of death for individuals between 10-24 years old.  (American Association of Suicidology, 2014.) There is help if you or a loved one is experiencing depression or suicidal thoughts. Some signs to look out for are changes in behavior, eating/sleeping habits, and drasticRead More

All About Adoption

by Lauren Rudzis, Development & Communications Coordinator Choosing to adopt is a big step for anyone, but even thinking about the process of adoption can be a daunting task. Prospective parents might be turned off by the sheer landslide of information available. There are numerous complicated steps to gain legal approval and suitability–not to mentionRead More

Oscar J. Tolmas Charitable Trust Donates to Jewish Family Service to support Counseling for Children and Families

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (7/19/2017): Jewish Family Service of Greater New Orleans (JFS) is pleased to accept a generous donation from the Oscar J. Tolmas Charitable Trust to support counseling services for children and families. The donation primarily supports an established partnership between JFS and the Jewish Community Day School (JCDS) in Metairie, to offer on-site counselingRead More

Bikur Chaverim is a unique “Visiting Friends” program

Fran Dinehart, LCSW Licensed Clinical Social Worker/Case Manager One way JFS serves adults who are homebound or semi-homebound, is to provide social visits from volunteers in the Bikur Chaverim, or Visiting Friends program.  The focus is on creating positive relationships.  Both the volunteer visitor and the person receiving visits gain enjoyment and companionship – likeRead More

May is Mental Health Awareness Month

Katie Godshall, LCSW Intern Program Supervisor Increase your understanding of mental health conditions: What are the signs and symptoms of poor mental health? What can be done to improve your mental health? May is Mental Health Awareness month! Each year, May brings us many wonderful experiences from Jazz Fest and Bayou Boogaloo, to warm daysRead More

My rewarding experience attending the Anti-Defamation League’s Unity Day Youth Summit

Rachel Lazarus Eriksen, LCSW, BACS Director of Clinical Services Last Friday, February 10th, I was pleased to represent JFS as Facilitator for the Anti-Defamation League’s (ADL) Unity Day Youth Summit. What an incredible event! Hundreds of high school sophomore students from 30 area schools came together to discuss diversity, standing up to hate and bullyingRead More

JFS has 4 Stars!!!!

Roselle M. Ungar, Executive Director I am very pleased to inform you that on February 6th Jewish Family Service of Greater New Orleans (JFS) was awarded a coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator for sound fiscal management and a proven commitment to accountability and transparency. Contributors demand greater accountability, transparency, and measurable results from charities theyRead More

JFS offers Continuing Education Workshops

JFS is pleased to offer ongoing Continuing Education Workshops for health professionals in our community. The last workshop, “An Introduction to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy,” was presented by Stephen W. Phillippi, Jr., PhD, LCSW, Director of the Institute for Public Health & Justice on January 20th, at the JFS office in Metairie. Participants learned (in part,)Read More

Welcome to the New JFS Website and Blog

Roselle M. Ungar, CFRE Executive Director We are delighted to introduce you to our new website. While new is nice, the goal of this website is to effectively and easily highlight information that is most important to YOU. Plus, it’s mobile-friendly (hello, 21st century!), so you can browse resources on the go. For almost 70Read More