ATLANTA, May 22, 2017 – Jewish Family & Career Services (JF&CS) is excited to celebrate the grand opening of its completed campus. More than 250 guests joined the celebration and ribbon-cutting on May 10, taking staff-guided tours of the buildings and gardens. The state-of-the-art campus helps JF&CS achieve two goals: to provide specialized space for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and to enhance the counseling center to create an office environment that ensures maximum confidentiality and privacy.
The campaign to complete the campus was a community effort that spanned two years of planning, fundraising, designing and building. Twenty-six foundations and 260 individuals and/or families contributed to the effort. The capital campaign set a goal of $5.1 million; in the end, the agency surpassed that goal to raise a total of $6.7 million.
“The investment made by so many literally will change lives,” said Rick Aranson, CEO of JF&CS. “These new facilities are going to allow us to offer the level of service our clients need, depend on and deserve. The impact on their lives is going to be tremendous.”
Cherie Aviv and John Perlman led the campaign, while Lois Blonder and Ann and Michael Kay served as honorary chairs. Cabinet members included Sheryl Blechner, Ellen Chalef, Judith Cohen, Amanda Cohn, Ina Enoch, Billie Greenberg, Etta Raye Hirsch, Scott Horowitz, Bruce Lindemann and Lynn Redd. The groundbreaking ceremony was held on March 17, 2016.
Walter and Frances Bunzl Family Foundation Clinical Services Wing
The counseling center, which added 3,000 square feet, has been renamed the Walter and Frances Bunzl Family Foundation Clinical Services Wing in honor of the family that donated the funds to build it. The renovated wing has been outfitted with new, comfortable furnishings, soundproof walls, unisex bathrooms, lobby workstations where clients can retrieve insurance information and multiple exits to ensure privacy. Children and adolescents now have their own waiting room separate from adults, and new testing rooms with adjustable desks will accomodate children of varying ages.
Counseling services include a domestic violence support program, an addiction recovery and prevention program, a big brother/big sister program as well as counselors who work with children, adults and seniors dealing with grief, loss, depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues.
The new IndependenceWORKS building, with 8,300 square feet, houses JF&CS’ Intellectual & Developmental Disabilities Services, which provides creative community engagement activities, customized employment training and placement as well as lifestyle supports to participants. The previous facility was located in an office park in Chamblee. Individuals gain the skills to live a full life and to work in meaningful jobs. IndependenceWORKS has an open floor-plan with lots of natural light and includes a teaching kitchen, art room, laundry facility and computer lab to teach life and work skills to participants. A dedicated sensory room features state of the art equipment to invoke an environment of calm for individuals experiencing stress. The building also includes the “Hub,” where participants start their day before going to jobs, field trips or other activities.
IndependenceWORKS can hold up to 100 people, more than doubling the capacity of the previous space. The customized employment program helps able participants prepare for jobs in the community. It offers training, job search help and support for employment-related issues to adults in the program who have the ability and desire to work.
The completed campus also features four “named” gardens that create a park-like environment providing opportunities to enjoy the sprawling landscape as well as a Giving Garden where vegetables are grown by volunteers, staff and clients to distribute to individuals receiving JF&CS services.
In addition to counseling services and services for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, JF&CS offers career services for job seekers and employers, older adults services including geriatric care management, and dental care for people who cannot afford it at the Ben Massell Dental Clinic.
Jewish Family & Career Services Atlanta is dedicated to making hope and opportunity happen for the metro Atlanta community. Established in 1891, Jewish Family & Career Services (JF&CS) offers programs and resources to help improve the quality of life and build self-sufficiency for individuals and families in greater Atlanta. Our vision is a community of empowered lives; our mission, making hope and opportunity happen. JF&CS serves thousands of individuals annually regardless of age, race, religion, national origin or ability to pay. For more information about our entire array of services, please call 770.677.9300 or visit JFCSatl.org. The main office is located at 4549 Chamblee Dunwoody Road in Atlanta.