LBISD JewishFamilyService

Friday, August 11th


Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Good morning and welcome to another edition of living veteran San Diego public service presentation of the Ettercap San Diego radio stations I'm Jerry Lee. For decades now Jewish family service of San Diego has been a trusted community resource for individuals and families in times of need. Jewish family service is a home for people in search of better lives and for those seeking to make better lives possible. Joining us this morning is Jewish family service at San Diego director of social and wellness services. Meredith Morgan Roth and volunteer driver for Jewish family services on the go service Barbara Manson. Welcome Meredith. Welcome Barbara. Thanks for having us good to have you on the show I've been actually trying to get Jewish family service on the show for awhile so I'm glad we were finally able to to make it happen. Tell us a little bit about. Do you stand service of San Diego out how long is the organization and around. I'm really pleased to say that we are nearing our centuries of of services we started and back in 1918. By consortium woman who were very concerned with immigration issues with Jewish people coming through Mexico and basically remaining stuck at the border and so. From that initial immigration. Assistance. The agency over the last 98 years has morphed into one of the largest social service providers here in San Diego County. And how many years now. 9898. In the year 2000 eighteen will be a hundred well and we've been here awhile Panetta knows that because I actually I first got to San Diego in 1982. Actually do some work. For a Jewish family service. I just got here didn't have a job yet so I did do little work for you guys out what is what is the mission of Jewish family service. I've recently in the last two or three years Jeff bass has really tried to us streamline its purpose. And we came up with what we felt were the three most important areas of impact. The Ares of impact there most focused on ever assisting families with moving forward towards self sufficiency. Fostering community connection and my favorite of course it's the division I working and is aging with dignity doc and I do want to talk a little bit about those. In just few it's not that used to be located in Hillcrest yes. And that's where you are when I worked for you guys were you located now where I'm located in Kearny mesa on Balboa avenue between the fifteen and a 163. Very centrally located so it's a really great community access point. As you mentioned at the mission. And that has pretty much. Your services the organization's services pretty much centered around those three major. Issues from three major goals. And let's let's talk about those if we could let's start with site empowering individuals and families to move towards self sufficient. Well one of the things that we've really tried to focus on it's not just you know. Assisting someone in a moment of crisis because if you don't actually assist them fully and homeless Oakley is an entire you know a bigger picture. Very often they wind up in crisis repeatedly. So what we try to do is take clients whether it's families are single parents or. Or people with nutrition and security would ever that presenting issues is. We try to give them the tools and us and help them with assessing what can be changed through education. Or. Maybe just some different support mechanisms. We have a variety of different programs that actually worked worthless self sufficiency whether it's counseling services or food assistance we do job. I wanna say job education and placement for people trying to enter the workforce. So that they would have better resonates in a better opportunity to actually gaining compliant they're seeking. We also have different types of programs to. Enable parents to be better parents we have one of the largest. Positive parenting programs in the county we just received. I wanna say with another five years of funding in order to assist parents with gaining skills and knowledge on working with their children. In aid more efficient and productive way. Now you're organization. That you cater to all ages right and and throughout San Diego county and here's your services. Are available to anybody our service available to everybody I think that's actually at very popular misconception about CA FS. Is that it's each Jewish agency serving only Jewish clientele guy and it couldn't be further from the truth as we have been and relatively. Just to speak of our staff we've been extremely diverse staff. We have an extremely diverse population that we service. And again it's all faiths all backgrounds on it is open to the public we do have an occasional program that is specific to Jewish clientele. An example would be our SOS program that's designed for holocaust survivors and tell us a little bit about that program with the Holocaust survivor program is there are geriatric care management. And geriatric care management is actually it's a program that assists older adults. And their families with a dressing needs so it could be something as simple as assistance with scheduling medical appointments. It could be having a KC can into the home. And take some parents it's a little bit it's not home care but it's a little bit like a helping hand and then guidance through the aging process. With the SOS program. There's a little more of an in depth type of programming simply because we are very familiar with holocaust survivors needs and our experts in the field in assisting those families. That have the challenges and it's particularly SOS program which he won a plan is for low income holocaust survivors but we do service. In general how all types of holocaust survivors okay now another goal or part of your mission. Is fostering community connection. An engagement. Tell us about that how you doing that with Jewish family service we like to partner with other agencies in the community. So when going into that strategic planning process and came up with this is one of our areas of impact. We wanted to reach out to other community. Agencies that. Are doing things similar to us but not necessarily the same so we aren't duplicating services so we like to partner with. For example we can have a faith based organizations. Other I wanna say City Council county supervisors we really wanna be out there in the community so that one we can create. Synergies. Between different agencies within their government weather for profit or were there for nonprofit to create a stronger San Diego. And the third goal which is your baby on Madison. Supporting aging the dignity tell us about that. The nineteen feet supporting aging with dignity when he hit a certain age. Moving towards self sufficiency. Is not always real ballistic so with each and with dignity what we're trying to do is give this many on support services and opportunities for older adults. To gauge how they see fit and maintained our lifestyles whether it's in their own homes or whether it's in assisted living facility or whether it's out in the community so the idea is to. Provide those services such as transportation. Social on wellness center's nutrition programs. That. Gives older adults. The support they need taped to age as they find appropriate. I've done several shows on with organizations that deal with senior population here in San Diego and that is a big things is given and the opportunity to live the rest of their life. How would dignity. Now you have several programs and and one of them is here you're on the go service more talk about that just a few minutes good and I didn't wanna talk about some of the other. Other programs and services that you offering and one of them is is your food mobile at a how does that work. Our food they'll program is there a similar we are contractor to the county of San Diego we are happy to bluebird hot Kosher meals to homebound older adults and also younger adults with disabilities. The deals are prepared fresh daily. And packaged up and fits on we actually prepare those deals on our campus at the Jenner when Jacobs campus in balloon family kitchen. It's a brand new state of the art facility. And it's absolutely a wonder to watch we have a viewing window and it's amazing to walk by that kids can actually see all those meals in motion. And then we have staff and head of group of fantastic volunteers that actually take meals out into the community and deliver them to older adults. We also have a different types of food delivery service so you may be low income and going through whenever county programs similar to meals on wheels. And and receive food that way that you also can be let's say recovering from surgery had a hip replacement. And it's something you just need somebody decent cooking for you for a couple of weeks you can actually call up and have temporary services well. And we also have find that sometimes children from out of state will call and order food for their parents a surprise. And I says and send nice packets Kosher food to their parents and upper left once so this is the service. The food mobile it's not one that just goes around and and park somewhere a food truck we would love to have one aspect of it's different than that I'm very special designed units that keep the food hot stuff because we do serve these as hot meals we also have frozen options available. But the clients to receive a hot freshly cooked Kosher meal on that delivery route they're all Kosher they are all of those serial desks and and what kind of meals we talked to. All I must stare through qualities exceptionally high and most people think of congress to dining or meals for seniors things like that you think of peas mashed potatoes. And maybe officially at eight. That's not what we're doing our food is cooked fresh. We actually ship our meat and protein products in from the East Coast to ensure that the highest quality Kosher that we can buy within our budget. Examples would be. Which she doesn't it Prodi's sometimes we have stuffed cabbage rolls that's always a favorite on the menu sometimes it's something as simple as meatloaf. And we are also I have the opportunity to serve salmon we actually search salmon out to the community. And what the people are receiving at the social wellness centers when it comes to lunch is the same food quality that the people that are home banner gang it's the same quality that our own staff and board eat so. Everyone has been really enjoying the food it's again it's a very high quality making me hungry. Another service of a Jewish family service to San Diego is your fixes service tell snuffed out that's an interesting one that jet just exit service and we are one of the few county contracts here in San Diego where contractor three aging an independent service. Through their file prevention program and Sam chest X it is designed to help older adults as well as their caregivers. To remain safe within their homes the whole concept behind it. Is to avoid Eric or reduce file rest. So we do things we go and assistant older adults it could be something we use simple doorbell installations. We tacked down carpet. Our big one that number one is we install hundreds and hundreds of grab bars. And these are all donation base there is no charge to cost to the client if they're able to donate happily we will take it. But very often they can't if they can't afford unit to buy their own grab our chances of their ability to Tony is is pretty slam but we still want them to be safe. We don't you major home repair so that we don't go in and fix your plumbing may be a leaky faucet. But we're not gonna go ahead and Andy to Ricci plumbing or large structural repairs. But think about hand rails grab bars lights. We do have a case for ruby did something just as simple as changing a light bulb because a nine year old should not be on a platter. So against fix it is also done by volunteers we have a lot of retired contractors and people was just fantastic. Spirit and they go out there into the community to make sure. That somebody is safe with inner calm and this is this set particular program. Only for seniors. It is only for seniors you have to be over sixty years old. And do you do you have to have some type of caregiver or somebody associated with youth who is concerned about you. So the term caregiver can be very loosely interpreted it could be a neighbor so you hear emergency contact person is your neighbors so it's always kind of a set of people. But you also can have a caregiver. Such as. You know a friend a family manner so it could be your child that's calling for you could be yourself. It could be an Avery you can call yourself but it is happy to identify. Who potentially your caregiver is that does not mean that their hands on living with the type of caregiver could just be concerned or are there any other requirements then for for somebody to take part in this in the service because there's multiple contracts throughout the account you've aren't really any requirements it's open to everybody. But we do is JE SS only services in certain zip codes if you call on you are outside of one of our zip codes. Do you not worry we will connect you immediately with the agency that is contract to servicers that coat. Very much the same with two mobile backtracking a little bit. If you call and you are outside of our service area and we're happy to connect you with another agency that does does the things similar. What is your service and now does that mean for anything that has to do with the Jewish and the service you have a certain service area. I can say overall for the entire agency weak service the entire county of Sany count. That doesn't mean that every single project. Or program. Services every zip code within the county. Some are very specific to let's say we have a contractor program with a certain city. Then obviously we're going to be doing that service specifically within that city limits. Other times that depending on how we are funded through grants we maybe. Selected to service. Let's say sixteen zip it's and another social services agency does another fifteen zip codes. So we digging things up and aura that is if it's grant funded we wanna be unbelievably good custodians of that funding. And ensure that we're not to duplicating services. So therefore that's why he sees some of these services not completely overlapping. Ultimately our goal would be to have at least with the aging and wellness services. To have all of these zip codes overlapping but that's not the case at this time but we're working towards that. One other thing that you another program of yours and you mentioned this that are still a little bit ago. And that's your social and wellness centers near more than more than one of these. We do we actually have forced social wellness centers here throughout the county our oldest and our largest is the college avenue senator. And that is located in del Cerro it's also it's our oldest senator it's been around approximately eighteen years. Currently it's housed at our community this is example of the community partner and fostering community engagement it's housed at temple Emmanuel. So we utilize their space and they are able to have their congregation. Enjoy aid the services of the center as well because they have an older adult population we have an older adults Sadr it's a beautiful example of community partnership in bringing services to older adults so what are some of the services that you provide at your social and well it's extremely robust program there operates five days a week and it also has transportation. We'll touch on on the go and a little bit on the go actually provides transportation to and from the center and that's that's our it is a county nutrition program so are those fabulous meals I was talking about ten and a bird winning family kitchen. There are delivered and served hot and trash. Acts that summer. And that's it's a donation based so if you were able to donate thank you we've looked at it's four dollars a meal. But if you're not able to donate and this is only hot meal you're gonna get all day long or possibly you know week. It's okay come how many have lunch and you're in a welcome place with a lot of friendly smiling people. We have brain fitness we also have county fitness programs the feeling fit goes on there we also have community. The fitness through. I would say our community college programs. We have art classes dancing we have incredibly fantastic performers can and so we have to live performances. Once a week we'll have a live performance. We do films and we also. Have education lectures and education series we have the museum of for example photographic arts. Come and every I want to say about six months or so and they do series whether it's on digital photography. Or the history of photography so it's. A really incredibly robust manner. And offerings changed so clients come and they've saw something on the news that they found fascinating. They can actually provide feedback and we look into it and say if this is a great programming an idea where incorporated. Okay and is this opened everybody's just absolutely open to everybody I'm sorry it is just seniors but it is opens the population. If you are sixty years old that is our per our preferred aged sixteen up that if you're 55 we're not gonna tell you to go away you would not be able to eat. The donation based meal that you still could have the meal but it would be a fee based meals seven dollars. And I did forget to mention that. Even though we we have that beautiful hot lunch option. This is our one solace on wellness center that we actually have a salad bar C connection is its alvare Rican decent client choice you can kind of build your own mail. And now let's let's talk about your on the go service okay. Have a little little background information on them them and wanna talk to. To Barbara because of barbarism volunteer for the service that lets get that are very fortunate to have heard about a little of back and information though on the service. On the gala was actually the brainchild of Brenda boffo Hammond she's my predecessor she is also the senior director of the teaching wellness division. She's been with Jan fast approximately eighteen years. So back in 2004. That's when on the gas started as the brighten smiles program that Barbara now volunteers for it was a tiny programs she had done research for years. About best practices and addressing the needs attract the transportation needs of older adults here in San Diego. As there's always been pressure on social services and the community in general to find some transportation solutions. So she'd built this program and designed it so that it was sustainable and expandable. So there's a level of scalability to it. I've brilliantly. As the program progress again it started in 2004. I think we had five or six drive first. And only about twelve or fourteen writers and we felt super accomplish because we pulled off 365. Brides. In one year which now looking back we do that in a week maybe not usual so. As the program progressed we became more and more well known we had received private funding from the Jewish community the Jewish federation the Jewish foundation those they give us the seed money. And there was some private funders as well that brought this program really needed to get kick started not this. Nice little five driver twelve writer program they wanted to really see it works and they infested and through that investment over the next couple of years. On the go exponentially crew and then in 2008. We were fortunate enough. I'm to be operating at such a level that we were able to apply for. Federal and county funding so the trans net tax on hotel tax that many people hear about on the radio all the time. That's funding actually is part of what funds on the go program. And we work closely with San Diego association of governments and dad and they've they've been partnering with us and administering our grants. And watching our program this tanks are now. Are we in 2016. We have probably about I wanna say eight fluctuates. But we have around 275. Drivers. That volunteer forest we have. About 17100 clients at every given moment. And I can say that since 2008 we had over 4500. Older adults enrolled in our program. So over the course of years and learn about a bit. It's a lot. Yeah now Barbara how long have you been doing this. Well I first found out about rights and smiles about five years ago when I retired from the health field I'm a registered nurse by profession. And when I retired I had no particular hobbies I had no idea what I was going to do. And I went online and I happen to see. This on the go program rights and smiles and I stitching I think I'll give them a call and say if I can be of some sort of volunteer assistant. And I got in touch with the barreling Greenblatt who happens to be my immediate supervisor. And she said we just happen to be having an orientation tomorrow which he liked come. And I said sure I have nothing but time on my answer right now. So I went to the orientation. And I would say within an hour I felt like I had founded new family. Other reception was warm and friendly. There was nothing Stefan about it. I knew that this was something that I wanted to be a part of the only thing that was really required a siren call back then was they did a criminal check. And they also did a check on my driving record. So I think that's felt made me feel good dead be riders were having people in the program that had been screened to a degree right. And down so the next thing I knew I was ready to go on the computer which is extremely. User friendly. You can do it and your own leisure at home on your computer or your I pay it would every happen to have available. You can see what brides are available in your district. It's in chronological water. It tells you everything you need to know about the Ryder each issue where they live each issue where they're going. It shares you whether or not they have any particular. Disabilities or if they need to use a cane a walker they might have trouble hearing maybe your eyesight is pork. So you can make it judge been calling you look at this. By knowing whether this is somebody that you feel you wanna be. We wanna take like if you can't handle a walker and that might be a little heavy for you to handle. Then you may not want a select that right so it's very easy to choose. The person with their particular disability your handicap if you wanna call it that. Did you wanna say I did I wanted to chime in on the wet the barber is describing as our web based set of scheduling software that was actually developed here on the go. With the software developer. It is when the key reasons why volunteers stay with our program Barbara was describing her experience. Volunteer self select we don't pick a volunteer and say hi here's a for our time blocking your four rides volunteers can go on 24 sevenths. Access the listen rides. And completely determine who what when and you know wider driving said okay their own they do they do they dictate their own schedule it's perfect so I when I talk about that volunteer driver count going up and down. It's simply because we may have snow birds or we have active military that when they're deployed they they go away from us and then we're back com bam they're back in action. We also have people that biggest what did you one writer weaken and we have others that almost youthful time I I feel great Iraq. It's okay that I actually got my husband involved but backtracking a little bit I think it and they edit feature on the program that was very helpful for me. Is it you can take your cursor and you can see exactly the mileage distance between your home the person you're picking up. And where they have to go so you can adjust your timeframe as to how it fit your schedule. So it's it's so user friendly and there are weeks when I can due to wintry ride today and there are some weeks that I skip altogether. I even encouraged my husband who was teaching at the time that he should get involved in this because it was over awarding. For me and I'll go into that in a minute on the types of rewards that I receive from it. But I he'd agreed to try it and he was doing it on his spring breaks and in the summer. When he was a life and then he retired this past year and now he does have full time. And I will admit we each have our own favorite writers that we like we don't fight over them and how are sever lions. But and you do tend to have some that you may be get used to more than others. And they get used year. And one of the things that I found especially surprising that I wasn't anticipating and I did this. Ways that they allowed me to network and find other things for media do when I wasn't driving them for example. I was taking one lady to yoga two or three times a week. And I would come home and sit in front of the TJ. And I could do something wrong with this picture so the next thing I knew I was buying a yoga mat and I was going in I was doing yoga. Another lady I was taking to bingo every week and she said will you come Meehan and more played together. And I did and now I'm the bingo caller once a week now. So it. It was a wonderful way for needed network on. I was much of her reader and one lady always had her Kindle went there and she said let me show you how to use it. And before you know what I was buying a Kindle. So in many ways the rewards that I have received from this organization and driving these seniors I would say. My average. Senior that I drive is between the ages of 85 and 95. It's given me a whole new outlook on life they're so inspiring. I realize now that there is a whole another world out there I was thinking I was coming into home base in my own particular life but. I see now that you can remain independent. One of the things that many of the writers would say to me that they felt. So serious that they had to be so dependent and that they couldn't drive anymore. And I saw it totally the opposite Iceland as a way of remaining independent. And I make that very clear to them when I'm talking to them and I say you know by calling up and asking for the ride and continuing to do the things the social activities that you like getting to your doctor's appointments. And not bothering your family that you may be living when. For not having to depend on someone else. This is keeping you independent and it's keeping new young. Some great stories there so is so for me there rewards far outweigh any time that I might volunteer for this organization. That's great we have just a few more minutes left. I do wanna find out a little bit about how people can help you with your mission you are nonprofit organization. How can people help you. There's a variety of ways Barbara that they create example we always need volunteers so one method of assisting Jeff fast and they aren't and or on the go program. It's become a volunteer driver I can't stress enough how badly we need volunteers. And again Barbara really illustrated it beautifully about what a wonderful experience it is. So it's and it's one way to assist you can also donate we have a website JF SS DA dot org. And there are several ways to donate you can donate vehicles that the value of the vehicle will be donated to a program of your specification or. Hordes to JFS and general. You can also donate furniture. So by going onto the GA FS website Arab lots and lots of different ways that you can help out this actually wonderful agency and if somebody wants to volunteer. In general war with the on on the go service how to go about doing again we have an entire volunteer page. The all the volunteer opportunities so if driving is an ear saying they cheer computer programmer or you love to work in the kitchen and or you love to work at a social and what this hour and assist older adults with their activities there's so many different volunteer. Opportunities. We have over fifty different programs that share fastened the majority of them do you require volunteer support so by going onto that website and going on so volunteer page. You can see all the different opportunities for volunteering whether it's a one off like he can't just a one group event or is it something that you want to commit to UNG repeatedly and Barbara. You would highly recommend. Be an eyebrow at a shadow of the doubt I think this is that. Greatest way to volunteer you make your own schedule you're your own boys you can do as much or as little issue like. And the organization. Shows their appreciation to their volunteers over and over again they have. Luncheons for us they do all kinds of activities to show their appreciation we get free car washes. I mean you can't ask for anything better sound skid and. You can have all the well great Meredith then and Barbara thank you so much for being on the Saturday. And for all you do the Jewish fan service thanks for what you do and community it's appreciated thank you for having us. That concludes another edition of living standards San Diego the opinions expressed on living veteran San Diego do not necessarily reflect the opinions and views of the staff and management. Of the and a count San Diego radio stations episodes of living veterans and the Eagles are available on the station's website. Until next time I'm Gary late have a great week.