News & Events

Matza & More Program benefits families in need

Posted & filed under JFCS News.

What would it mean to your family if Passover was out of reach?  

Again this year through the JFCS Matza & More program, more than 200 Jewish households in need received Passover baskets of fresh produce, gefillte fish, horseradish, grape juice, and matza ball soup mix; the Haggadot; and personal greeting cards from the students at Tucson Hebrew Academy. The program is donation and volunteer-driven, led for the 5th year by “volunteer-in-chief” Nancy Lefkovitz. Please consider supporting the program.

Click the links below to read the terrific April 2016 stories about Matza and More.

Arizona Jewish Post

Arizona Jewish Life

Our thanks to the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona, which supported the JFCS Matza and More Program in 2016.

Community Food Bank

2016 Weintraub Israel Center trip to Israel

Posted & filed under JFCS News.

CEO Carlos Hernández and his wife Nora Navarro are participating in the February 2016 Weintraub Israel Center trip to Israel.

Carlos Hernández and Nora Navarro

Carlos Hernández and Nora Navarro

Tel Aviv

This mosaic depicts the history of Israel from he time that some of the first settlers came through the port of Jaffa, to the moment that int 66 families established Tel Aviv, to the expansion to the north.


The mayor of Bet She'an and his translator welcoming the Tucson group to the Roman archeological site.

The mayor of Bet She’an and his translator welcoming the Tucson group to the Roman archeological site.

Bet She'an

In the Roman archeological site in the Israel town of Bet She’an.

Kiryat Malachi

Planting a fig tree at Kiryat Malachi, a city in Tucson’s partnership region of Israel


Western Wall

Prayers at The Western Wall in Jerusalem


Betty Anne Sarver receives Spirit of Philanthropy Award from JFCS

Posted & filed under JFCS News.

Our congratulations to Betty Anne Sarver, who was recognized at the National Philanthropy Day Luncheon at the Westin La Paloma Resort in Tucson Thursday, November 19, 2015.

The event is hosted annually by the Southern Arizona Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.


A letter from Jill Rosenzweig, 2013-14 Board Chair

Posted & filed under JFCS News.

Photo left to right: JFCS President and CEO Carlos Hernández; 2015/16 JFCS Board Chair Fred Fruchthendler; and 2013/14 JFCS Board Chair Jill Rosenzweig

Left to right: JFCS President and CEO Carlos Hernández; 2015/16 JFCS Board Chair Fred Fruchthendler; and 2013/14 JFCS Board Chair Jill Rosenzweig

This letter is from the newly published 2013-2014 Annual Report

It isn’t often that one has the opportunity to see one’s passions embodied in the work of an agency. By caring for those who are hurting and letting the community know that the Jewish people care for all people, JFCS has given me the opportunity to put my values into practice. I am truly honored to be part of this remarkable and enduring behavioral health organization and community services provider.

This has been an incredible two years for JFCS. The Affordable Care Act forced us to evaluate our position in the community. Our change in leadership gave us the opportunity to determine the qualities we needed in a CEO who could ensure that JFCS was positioned correctly in the new environment. Finally, our healthy financial position––obtained through your contributions, other gifts and grants, earned income from fees for services, and a partnership with the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona and the Jewish Community Foundation of Southern Arizona––provided us with the opportunity to move forward.

And we have progressed. In October 2014, the Board of Directors named Carlos Hernández, MA, LCSW, CPHQ, President and CEO of JFCS. His expertise includes clinical quality assurance; services for children, adolescents and families; and community collaborations that bring psychotherapeutic counseling to children and caregivers. He is providing the guidance JFCS needs to embrace the future. Carlos has built a leadership team that understands the mission of JFCS. They are dedicated to our Jewish values of healing the world (tikkun olam) with loving kindness (chesed) through just and charitable deeds (tzedakah). They daily put into practice the JFCS goal of serving people of all ethnicities and religions with respect for beliefs, choices, values and differences.

To this end, we also have begun making the kinds of strategic changes needed to ensure that JFCS is an agile behavioral health organization. We are continuing to meet the changing needs of our collaborative partners, our funders, and most importantly, our clients. We repeatedly fine-tune the ways in which we create new and renewed behavioral health partnerships and contracts, grow the number and size of charitable gifts we receive, and increase the number of people taking advantage of tax credits on behalf of our agency. The leadership team and staff are doing a fantastic job. They are certainly to be commended for their efforts and patience during this time of transition.

And we thank you for your charitable gifts and tax credits that are so important. They allow JFCS, among other things, to offer asliding fee scale for clinical services to people with low incomes and/or no health insurance, and to provide a wide variety of community services to vulnerable people.

As I stated earlier, I feel privileged to be part of this outstanding organization. We have been part of the fabric of our community for 74 years, and with your support, and our exceptional leadership and staff, we will make the kind of changes that will ensure that we continue to meet the evolving needs of the people who live here for a long time to come.

Jill Rosenzweig
Chair, 2013-14 Board of Directors

CLICK HERE to go to the Annual Report

JFCS supporter Irene Sarver passed away July 6th

Posted & filed under JFCS News.

Irene Sarver

Irene Sarver

A Woman of Valor

Irene Sarver, of blessed memory, passed away July 6th. Our condolences to her family, including Betty Anne Sarver, Ellen Dolgen and Robert Sarver.

“Irene and her family are an example for all of us of how to lead, how to build, and how to give,” said Fred Fruchthendler, Chair, JFCS Board of Directors.

JFCS honored Mrs. Sarver as the agency’s Director for Life on the Board of Directors because of her lifetime commitment to improving the lives of children and families in our community. In celebration of the Sarver family’s commitment to quality counseling and community services, JFCS’s counseling center is named for her husband, Jack, and son Gary, both of blessed memory.

The family requests that any contributions in Mrs. Sarver’s memory be made to the JFCS Jack J. & Gary I. Sarver Counseling Center and the Sarver Heart Center.

Click here to make a memorial gift to JFCS.

Read Mrs. Sarver’s obituary in the Arizona Jewish Post.

New Book has 36 personal accounts from Southern Arizona Holocaust Survivors

Posted & filed under JFCS News.

To Tell Our Stories: Holocaust Survivors of Southern Arizona

Thirty-six personal accounts of experiences during the Holocaust have been captured in To Tell Our Stories: Holocaust Survivors of Southern Arizona, a new book edited by Raisa Moroz and Richard Fenwick.

It is available in Tucson at Antigone Books, the Jewish History Museum, and the gift shops at Anshei Israel and Bet Shalom and globally on

Proceeds from book sales support the Holocaust Survivors Program (HSP) at Jewish Family & Children’s Services of Southern Arizona.

“In 2009, I began asking my Russian-speaking clients to write stories about their lives, but I quickly realized that their stories would not be widely appreciated because of language barriers,” says Moroz, who is a Russian immigrant and the manager of the Holocaust Survivors Program, which offers case management, home care, financial assistance and social opportunities.

In 2010, Fenwick, a poet and a retired United States Air Force Russian linguist, volunteered to curate this collection of stories and visit with Russian-speaking survivors. He translated stories written in Russian, transcribed verbally recorded stories as the project expanded, and reviewed stories written in English by Survivors from other parts of Europe.

Moroz and Fenwick’s partnership continues with an open invitation to other Survivors in Southern Arizona to tell their stories. To date, 10 more Survivors have asked to be included in a second volume.

“We are fortunate and grateful to have this last generation of survivors in our midst to provide us the gift of their personal accounts, which, when combined with overwhelming statistics, continue to make the terror of the Holocaust very real in our minds and something we will never forget,” says Fenwick.

Jewish Family and Children’s Services of Southern Arizona is a non-profit agency that provides expert social and behavioral health services to the Jewish and greater Tucson community. JFCS helps children, adolescents, adults and seniors of all religious and ethnic origins meet their full potential by restoring well-being, cultivating self-sufficiency and strengthening family life. The agency’s staff and Board have been guided for 74 years by the Jewish traditions of healing the world (tikkun olam) with loving kindness (chesed) through just and charitable deeds (tzedakah). More:

Read more about the Holocaust Survivors Program at JFCS of Southern Arizona.