Free Services for Westchester Residents Facing Covid Challenges

Published Thursday, January 7, 2021

Many Westchester residents are struggling due to job loss, anxiety, food insecurity, and other challenges caused by the Covid pandemic, WJCS is offering free services provided by The COVID Relief Hub, a UJA initiative, powered by WJCS and formerly known as Upward-NY. The COVID Relief Hub is designed to assist Westchester residents and New Yorkers across the five boroughs and Long Island who have critical needs due to the far-reaching impact of the pandemic.

Career guidance workshops, job search support, emotional support workshops, counseling, kosher home-delivered meals to homebound seniors, and access to community resources to assist with food insecurity, cash assistance, and financial counseling are being offered free of charge.

Please review our list below of free workshops available in January.

 Career Services 

Wednesday, January 20 10:00-11:30 am

Networking Roundtable Q&A

We will have an open forum to discuss networking techniques to improve your job search. Join us to collaborate your successes with our group. 
Hosted by Jill Schreibman and Lisa Morris

Wednesday, January 27 10:00 am-12:30 pm

Mock Interview Over Zoom
Interviewing is a critical skill for any job seeker. Interviewing on Zoom can add another layer of stress. Practice is key! While it is a bit intimidating to interview in front of a group, constructive feedback, offered by a supportive group of your peers, will help better prepare you for future interviews.
Please email a copy of your resume, and have a copy of your resume handy and a relevant job description to the Zoom meeting.

We will first meet as a larger group, then will move to breakout rooms where you will be able to practice your responses with 2 or 3 other people. Each person will have a chance to be the interviewer and the interviewee in the breakout room before coming back together to interview in front of the larger group.

Space is limited, sign up today. This workshop will be offered again in February.


Mental Health Services

Wednesday, January 20 7:30 pm 

Grandparenting During the Pandemic

Many grandparents and older family members are faced with stress, disappointment, loneliness and social isolation during these challenging times. Some older adults have not seen their grandchildren due to health concerns about exposure and safety risks of travel during the COVID crisis. Please join us for a discussion about finding our equilibrium and managing our stress. Learn about innovative ways to create new family rituals and connections with grandchildren, despite limited in-person connections.

Please register by contacting Jennifer Schmelkin, LCSW: [email protected]



Thursday, January 21 7:30 pm

Helping Children Deal with Disappointment During the Coronavirus Era

Many are faced with the stress and loss of being isolated from family members. Children have limited social opportunities due to remote learning and canceled activities. Children sense the stress, anxiety and challenges that their families have experienced during these uncertain times. Join us for a discussion about how parents can help children deal with their feelings about the effects of the Coronavirus, through a developmental lens and a framework of resilience.

Please register by contacting Jennifer Schmelkin, LCSW: [email protected]



Monday, January 25 1:00 pm

Mindful Parenting Our Children/Teens Through the Storm: One Breath at a Time: A Workshop for Parents

Through these uncharted waters, as parents we must find our own anchor in order to best support our children and teens. Let's come together to support each other through these challenging times, and discuss how to best cope with this moment, the "here and now." We will discuss: parenting with presence, building healthy coping skills, how to "press pause" and regulate our emotions, mindful listening and communication, nurturing resilience, prioritizing and modeling self-care, gratitude, practicing loving-kindness and self-compassion.

Please register by contacting Jennifer Schmelkin, LCSW: [email protected]


Wednesday, January 27, 2020 10:00 am

The Pandemic is a Portal: Losses, Learnings and Hope in Times of Radical Change

In her article, “The Pandemic is a Portal”, the award-winning writer, Arundhati Roy, wrote: “Historically, pandemics have forced humans to break with the past and imagine their world anew. This one is no different.”

Through discussion and experiential exercises, Ruth Rosenblum, LCSW, psychotherapist and Mindfulness Meditation teacher, will guide us in an exploration of Roy’s idea that pandemics and radical social change can serve as “portals” for personal growth and collective development. By sharing our experiences of these times, the challenges, the losses, the learnings, the hopes and visions for our future, we can, together, find the comfort, connection, strength and renewal to continue moving forward with faith, courage and community.

Please register by contacting Ruth Rosenblum, LCSW: [email protected]


For More information about:

Employment Services, contact Lisa Morris at [email protected]

Mental Health Services, contact Jen Schmelkin at [email protected]     

Meet the COVID-19 Relief Hub Team:

Sherry Birnbaum, LCSW
Assistant Executive Director, Jewish Programs Division

Lisa Morris
Program Coordinator, Career Specialist

Jill Schreibman, LCSW
Social Worker

Naomi Koller, MBA
Career Specialist

Michael Weiss, MBA
Career Specialist

Sylvia Davi
Administrative Assistant

If you have a financial, emotional or employment concerns, please contact Lisa at 914.761.0600 X2150 or [email protected]

If you would like to speak with a mental health professional, please contact Jen Schmelkin, LCSW at [email protected].


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