There are organizations that have become synonymous with certain public services:
- YMCA– we think of recreation and fitness for the local community.
- Big Brother/Big Sisters– an image of an effective youth-mentoring model comes to mind.
- NYANA-New York Association for New American- established in 1949 to assist Jewish refugees mainly from Eastern European countries ( when my family and I immigrated to NY in the winter of 1989, NYANA offered my family everything from employment services ( for my father) ESL classes (for my mother) hand-me down clothing and used-furniture to furnish our very first apartment.( for all of us)
- FEGS– the mission of supporting people with disabilities find work ; a legacy of employment services aimed historically at serving the Jewish community overcome discriminatory employment practices.
After I graduated college in 2008, with the onset of the recession I went to my local FEGS office to seek employment opportunities. Although, I secured employment through other means, the fact that members of my family knew about FEGS and encouraged me to seek their services is a testament to their mission since 1934.
FEGS will be scaling down services and other organizations will need step in to fill the gap in service delivery for clients .
FEGS said it will “transfer over the next several months of all of FEGS’ programs and services to other providers and is working closely with its City and State government partners, and other stakeholders, to effect those transitions.”( http://www.thejewishweek.com/news/new-york/questions-loom-wake-fegs-fall 2/4/15)
Its sad to see an organization with such scope of reach go under, it is important that human-services agencies like FEGS remain funded and retain great leadership so other can be helped like my family was when we were most in need.