Readers’ Choice 2021: Charitable Organization

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Jewish Family and Children’s Services

(415) 449-1200  •

Perhaps not a single Readers’ Choice has failed to laud the works of Jewish Family and Children’s Services of San Francisco.  During the Covid pandemic and recent fires, their services have been life-savers for 120,000 people: raising funds and providing desperately needed assistances for people affected by the pandemic and fire evacuations. Additional services include adoption help, LGBTQ support, senior and end-of-life counseling, and assistance to émigrés, Holocaust survivors, people with disabilities and families in crisis. The organization also serves the North Bay and the Peninsula, providing compassionate care to children, families and older adults facing transitions and personal troubles.



Hebrew Free Loan

(415) 546-9902  •

Hebrew Free Loan currently has $18.8 million in loans circulating throughout the community, which represents a 21% increase over pre-pandemic numbers. The association has been filling a desperate need for support and funding for so many who fell ill and fell behind during the pandemic. And they are not expecting the surge in demand to disappear anytime soon. Since 1897, the organization has provided help to many with interest-free loans; in addition to families facing emergencies they also help immigrants, adopting couples, first-time homebuyers, students and small business owners. An incredible 99.5 percent of the loans have been repaid.



Shalom Bayit

(866) 742-5667  •

Domestic violence has been on the rise since the pandemic began and the need for Shalom Bayit has been greater than ever before. The organization is Northern California’s first and only Jewish agency dedicated to eradicating domestic violence. Their goal: to promote peaceful homes and families, teach skills for healthy relationships, and work to build a safe, vibrant Jewish community that is free from violence and abuse. Their three main programs are counseling for survivors of abuse, community education, and Love Shouldn’t Hurt, dating violence prevention for Jewish youth.

Jewish Family & Community Services East Bay

(510) 704-7475  •

J. readers continue to recognize and appreciate  the efforts of the JFCS East Bay. The organization is a provider of social services to East Bay individuals, families, children, older adults, Holocaust survivors and refugees. Recent efforts include helping to resettle well over 100 Afghan refugees in our area, and preparing to help more as they arrive, amassing a coterie of volunteers to supplement their staff. “Compassion in action, commitment to all” is its mission, and every day, staff and  volunteers take on the mantle of that mission, bringing help and hope to the many they serve.

Alameda County Community Food Bank


A new, worthy community organization has made it onto the J. Readers’ Choice, in recognition of the exemplary service they provide. With the harrowing statistic of 1 in 4 residents facing possible food shortage in the community, Alameda’s Food Bank makes it their business to get people fed with a hot meal or connected with free groceries immediately. The organization partners with more than 200 food pantries, hot-meal programs, senior centers and other nonprofits to distribute millions of pounds of food every year. Donations and volunteers are always needed!



Oshman Family JCC

(650) 223-8700  •

The Oshman Family JCC, once known as the Albert Schultz JCC, had humble beginnings as a rented facility in Palo Alto. As the community began growing, the visionary board leadership saw something bigger, and after years of hard work and fundraising, the OFJCC opened on the Taube Campus. Now, a decade later, the JCC continues to manifest the vision that spawned it: a world class pool and workout facility, top level music and lectures, a beautiful gathering place for events large and small, and a place to build community.

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