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Press Release

Announcing the Max Rosenfeld Fund at JF&CS: Providing Scholarships to Jewish Women

WALTHAM, MA (June 14, 2017) – JF&CS is proud to announce the Max Rosenfeld Fund at JF&CS, a successful transfer of full management of the Max C. Rosenfeld Foundation funds to our agency.

The Max C. Rosenfeld Foundation (the Foundation) was established on September 23, 1923 to provide interest free loans and/or scholarships to Jewish women to ensure they had access to training and education to gain employment and become self-sustaining. Max Rosenfeld, a Boston bottle supply dealer, owner of the M.C. Rosenfeld Company, and the namesake for the Foundation, specifically provided for this purpose in his will. He described the Foundation as “for the benefit of needy Jewish women living in the city of Boston or its suburbs. It is my desire in making this bequest to relieve a situation which my observation leads me to believe exists, the result largely of the inability of young Jewish women to secure adequate training or education to enable themselves to be self-supporting.”  The Foundation has been supporting Jewish women by offering loans since 1935.

JF&CS and the Max C. Rosenfeld Foundation have had a long-standing relationship. Former JF&CS CEO, Sy Friedland, served as a trustee of the Foundation for many years. After Sy’s retirement, JF&CS CEO Rimma Zelfand continued the relationship and also joined the Foundation board of trustees.  In addition, Ruth Wolf, administrator of the Foundation, worked from donated desk space at JF&CS headquarters in Waltham for many years.  When Ruth retired in 2013, JF&CS began managing the Foundation’s scholarship program. Current Foundation trustees, including president Ruth Nemzoff and members Brenda Freishtat, Cecily Morse, and Deborah Offner, were impressed with JF&CS’s management of the program, initiating a full transfer of the management of the Foundation scholarship funds to JF&CS this year.

Rimma Zelfand, JF&CS CEO, shared, “The mission of the Foundation is closely aligned with the mission of JF&CS, providing people the tools and resources they need to improve their lives. The JF&CS Center for Basic Needs Assistance, which already manages the Hebrew Free Loan program for CJP, was able to seamlessly adopt the program into their offerings.”

Ruth Nemzoff shared, "This is the second transition of a Jewish organization that I have shepherded.  The first, Etgar L'Noar and the Jewish Special Education Collaborative transitioned to become Gateways: Access to Jewish Education.  As that effort led to synergies, I expect similar positive outcomes for JF&CS’s assumption of the Max C. Rosenfeld Foundation scholarship program."

JF&CS is thrilled to become the provider of scholarships and interest free loans (through what is now known as the Max Rosenfeld Fund at JF&CS) to women entering college, taking educational courses, or looking for professional training. Applicants must be Jewish and demonstrate a financial need, in accordance with Max Rosenfeld’s bequest.

Contact Meredith Joy, Director of the Center for Basic Needs Assistance, at mjoy@jfcsboston.org for more information.

About Jewish Family & Children’s Service
The Center for Basic Needs Assistance (CBNA) is the JF&CS integrated and comprehensive response to the issues most commonly facing people with low income in our community. The primary goal of CBNA is to ease the burden of poverty among members of the Jewish community throughout Eastern Massachusetts.  By providing an integrated set of core services under one roof, we help our clients meet their basic needs for food, housing, fuel, and utilities while giving them a sense of relief and stability.

For 150 years, Jewish Family & Children’s Service has provided exceptional human service and health care programs, guided by Jewish traditions of social responsibility, compassion, and respect for all members of the community. With an integrated network of more than 40 programs serving communities throughout Eastern and Central Massachusetts, JF&CS helps people of all faiths and backgrounds meet life’s challenges. JF&CS programs focus on serving particularly vulnerable populations including children and adults with disabilities or mental illness, new mothers and their infants, seniors living with chronic conditions, and people experiencing financial crisis, hunger, or domestic abuse. Visit www.jfcsboston.org for more information.

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