Volunteers of the Month: Beth Arogeti & Ellen Chalef

Volunteers of the Month: Beth Arogeti & Ellen Chalef

Each year JF&CS conducts the Annual Campaign, which raises unrestricted funds to help those in need right here in our own community. Donors who generously contribute to the campaign are a very large reason the work JF&CS does is a reality. This year, it is truly an honor to have the campaign chaired by two very active supporters: Beth Arogeti and Ellen Chalef. Both of these remarkable women have already dedicated countless hours to the organization, and for this we are exceedingly proud to highlight them as our volunteers of the month.

Beth Arogeti is a fifth generation Atlantan. She is married to Joel, with whom she has three children, and has been active in the Atlanta Jewish community for many years. Her early involvement with JF&CS came not as a volunteer but as a client. “My mother was diagnosed with a neurological disorder,” she says.”My father was still working full time and needed help during the day to care for her. So we turned to Legacy Home Care.” Beth’s mother remained with the same caregiver for the next eight years.  During this time, Beth was exposed to JF&CS a great deal and decided she wanted to extend her involvement on a different level.

Ellen Chalef is a CPA and mother of two who has been doing volunteer work for as long as she can remember. She moved to Atlanta to attend Emory University, fell in love with the city and never left. Her connection with JF&CS followed from her husband, Michael, a volunteer dentist at the Ben Massell Dental Clinic. “Michael’s enthusiasm for JF&CS was contagious,” Ellen says. “It really made me want to become involved.” So she began by making solicitation calls at phone-a-thons.

After both of their very different initial exposures, Beth and Ellen wanted to take on bigger roles with JF&CS. In 2008, they entered the Tools for Leaders program, which transitioned them into renowned volunteers of the organization. They currently serve on the Board of Directors and have been “Take Fivers,” which means they were responsible for personally soliciting at least five people. Additionally, last year Beth was the co- chair of the Community of Caring luncheon as well as the Annual Campaign. Ellen co-chaired the Community  of Caring luncheon in 2010, and earlier this year, she co-chaired the Ben Massell Dental Clinic’s “Celebrating 100 Years of Smiles” gala.

When the discussion of 2013 Annual Campaign chairs came up, the idea of asking these two was something that was agreed upon by all. “Beth and Ellen have such dedication for JF&CS,” says Miriam Friedman, Director of Development. “We knew the Annual Campaign would be the best it could be with these two spearheading it.” The feeling was mutual on the other end, as Beth and Ellen both quickly accepted the role. “I have such a passion for this organization and the people it serves,” Ellen says. “JF&CS is a dynamic organization that recognizes the needs in the community.” Beth agrees and says Jill Cohen and Juli Galanti, both of the development department, and their enthusiasm was a big reason for her role. “This work is for a wonderful cause and is the least I can do in return for what JF&CS has done for me and my family,” she says.

The Annual Campaign officially kicked off on May 10th with the Community of Caring luncheon. The event raised nearly $350,000, making it the highest starting point of any Annual Campaign to date. Beth and Ellen’s efforts have already played a huge part in making this happen. “I’m very excited and energized about this. It recognizes that people see there is a need in the community,” Ellen says. The overall goal for Annual Campaign is to raise $1.3 million by Dec. 31st, but Beth has an earlier deadline in mind. “I want to see this goal met by the end of the summer. Let’s get as many people involved in this campaign as we can!”

For more information on volunteering with these programs, please contact 770.677.9448 or email volunteer@jfcs-atlanta.org.

Written by Anna Wishneff, Posted in JF&CS - Hope and Opportunity Happen Here, Volunteer Services

About the Author

Anna Wishneff

Anna Wishneff

Anna Wishneff is our Marketing Associate/Content Curator. She is from Boca Raton, FL and graduated from the University of Central Florida with a bachelor’s degree in Interpersonal/Organizational Communication. Prior to JF&CS, Anna worked for the Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta, Birthright Israel NEXT and the Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta.