Posted by JF&CS
For Judi Fanger, volunteering is a family tradition. “I grew up in a small Jewish community where everybody contributed their time. Now, I want to help those in need just as my family did when I was younger,” shared Judi.
Judi was first introduced to JF&CS when she started volunteering for our Family Table Marketplace. The Marketplace allows families to pack their own groceries and choose whichever produce they wish, as opposed to having their groceries delivered monthly. Volunteers help clients select what they want, bring groceries out to the client's car, and clean up after everyone has picked out their food.
Judi’s desire to give back has gone beyond just volunteering for JF&CS. She currently volunteers for the Friend 2 Friend program through Jewish Big Brothers Big Sisters. As a volunteer for the Friend 2 Friend program, Judi is partnered with an adult with disabilities to share their hobbies and passions. Her husband also volunteers with Jewish Big Brother Big Sisters serving as a mentor to a teenage boy and he serves as a member of the JF&CS Bet Tzedek Legal Services Advisory Committee. These hands-on volunteer opportunities have given Judi and her family the chance to take an active part in helping build a strong foundation for those around them.
By working with two agencies, Judi has seen firsthand the vast number of services provided by different organizations in the area. She has become more aware of how nonprofits can work together to help a single client in all aspects of their needs. For example, if one agency provides services to counter social isolation, that same client can go to another agency for support in acquiring benefits or financial assistance.
So, when Judi's friend needed some additional help, Judi directed them to JF&CS. “There’s a huge benefit when multiple agencies help one client,” said Judi. “When a client accesses services from several places, there’s a better understanding that they’re not alone and there are services available to help them with many different needs.”
In some cases, those who need the most help are not always aware of the services that are available. Judi’s unique position gives her the opportunity to be on the lookout for resources that can help the individuals she works with. “Some people don’t know what’s available to them. It can be difficult for them to figure out whether or not they have to pay for a service,” said Judi. “As soon as I found out that my friend needed more help, I contacted the appropriate agencies and determined how to get the services they deserved.”
Two agencies collaborating to build a foundation of well-being can help a client feel like they have a support system behind them. By partnering with one another, organizations can truly fulfill a client’s every need. “As volunteers, it’s important to be aware of the different agencies in the community who can provide a multitude of services for those we’re serving. Too often, the people we’re helping don’t know what services are available or how to access them,” said Judi.
If you're interested in getting involved with JF&CS, visit our Volunteering page!