JFCS of the Suncoast Receives Impact100 SRQ Grant

The Giving Coast

Pictured: JFCS representatives: Edwin Castro, Fatherhood Program Facilitator, Kathleen Roberts, JFCS Board Chair, Helene Lotman, CEO and Keith Leahey, Chief of Behavioral and Health Services.

IMPACT100 SRQ announced on November 8th at their Annual Celebration & Awards Ceremony that the Jewish Family and Children’s Services are one of seven local nonprofits to receive a $109,000 grant. After a rigorous process that included submission to finalist, ten local nonprofits presented their organization’s mission before more than 400 members of Impact100 SRQ. Each organization rose to meet the challenge of a 5-minute pitch without the use of video, PowerPoint, or any visual aids. Impact100’s local communal giving concept is adopted by over sixty chapters globally, including the Sarasota chapter. Established in 2018, Impact100 SRQ unites a diverse group of women who provide transformative contributions to nearby nonprofit organizations in Sarasota and Manatee Counties. At least 100 women each give a $1,000 tax-deductible donation, and together they collectively award grants in increments of at least $100,000 to local nonprofits in five focus areas: Arts, Culture & History; Education; Environment & Recreation; Family; and Health & Wellness. Each member‘s annual donation strengthens the power of giving and funds the innovative projects that make a high impact and sustainable difference in our community. JFCS will use the Impact100 SRQ grant monies towards their School and Family Wellness Support Service with a clinician and a “wraparound” case worker who will be dedicated to families in need, which are many in Sarasota and Manatee counties. Sarasota County has fewer mental health providers than top performing counties nationally, with one provider for every 570 residents, compared to 1 to 270 nationally. According to the 2021 Sarasota County Mental Health Needs Assessment Task Force, “This county is “facing an impending crisis in the mental health system.” JFCS provides a variety of programs to meet the vital needs of children and families in terms of mental health. Their clinicians are witnessing a greater intensity in counseling families with several members who are often coping with a variety of problems. These needs require a higher degree of counseling and a more complex continuum of care. Their year-round Camp Mariposa provides counseling and activities for youths/teens for the prevention and intervention of substance abuse in a traditional camp setting. The Adolescent Diversion and Assistance Program (ADAP) keeps youths out of the juvenile justice system and improves their behaviors in school. JFCS also partners with Unidos Now, the Boys and Girls Club, and the State College of Florida Collegiate School in Venice to offer mental health counseling to support youths and their families. Dr. Helene Lotman, CEO of JFCS is ecstatic and grateful for this grant from Impact100 SRQ stating, “This funding will allow us to deepen and broaden the positive impact we make by improving family functioning, communication and addressing barriers that inhibit healthy forward progression of the familial unit.” There is much work to be done and JFCS is clearly positioned and qualified to continue to support this community in being a leading mental health and human services agency.

Pictured: JFCS representatives: Edwin Castro, Fatherhood Program Facilitator, Kathleen Roberts, JFCS Board Chair, Helene Lotman, CEO and Keith Leahey, Chief of Behavioral and Health Services.

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