Community Update from the CEO - April 2019

April 2019


An attack on any Jewish community is an attack on all Jewish communities, and on behalf of all Federations in North America, Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) responded immediately. By Saturday night, Michael Masters, the Director of the JFNA Secure Community Network (SCN) and his colleagues were on the ground in San Diego to support local efforts lead by ADL (Anti-Defamation League) San Diego and Jewish Family Service of San Diego. This morning, Michael, along with Jewish Federation of San Diego President & CEO Michael Jeser, visited Chabad of Poway, meeting with the leadership and the family of Rabbi Goldstein. Michael also met with several of the victims, as well as individuals who took action during the attack and likely helped save lives. Over the next few weeks, SCN will work with ADL San Diego to survey the community and make recommendations on how to address local needs.

When a violent act like this is perpetrated, we tend to feel helpless. There are few of us who can actually be on the ground helping, but there is something important each of us can do to help. The Jewish Federation of San Diego and the Jewish Community Foundation San Diego have opened a fund to meet the immediate physical, psychological, and spiritual needs of the victims and others impacted. 


Our own community is blessed with a multitude of Jewish organizations and congregations that are here to support us in times of crisis and to enrich Jewish life in Orange County. Whatever Jewish institutions you depend on, each one is important and each contributes to our vibrant community. Through this and each monthly issue of Community Update, I'll share with you something about the people, programs, philanthropy, and partnerships at Jewish Federation & Family Services that contribute to our community's collective strength. 

Best regards,

Arlene Miller




Things You Should Know



OC Jewish Community Will Celebrate Israel


Want a chance to come out and show your solidarity and support for the Jewish community while having a lot of fun? Israel's 71st birthday is coming up, and the whole Orange County Jewish community is invited to celebrate this milestone together on June 2 on the campus of Vista Verde Elementary School.

Jewish Federation & Family Services is pleased to be a sponsor of this family-oriented festival featuring a live concert of classic Israeli songs, a show for children, bounce houses for all ages, Israeli dancing, Israeli food, and more.

The "OC Celebrates Israel" fair is the culmination of Reflections, a month-long series of programs put on by the Merage JCC and sponsored by JFFS and other community sponsors. The series traces the journey from the darkest days of Jewish history, the Holocaust, to the pinnacle of Jewish peoplehood, the State of Israel. 

Reflections includes programs for all ages and offers multiple opportunities for the entire Orange County community to REFLECT on our heritage, ENGAGE in Jewish learning, EXPERIENCE Jewish culture, and FEEL connected to Israel.

Learn more and RSVP for each event of the Reflections series here and OC Celebrates Israel here.

Israel Programs

JFFS is proud to play a role in bringing Israel to OC and OC to Israel through a variety of programs and grants. Here is a sample of the Israel-related work we have been doing recently:

These and other critical programs and services are made possible by the generosity of supporters like you and by the Leon Ninburg Estate and by Edwin M. Posin. We are especially grateful for our sustaining donors, who ensure that our work in the community continues with their monthly donations.



For more information about topics covered in Community Update, please email Jewish Federation & Family Services of Orange County at