WJCS Awarded Westchester
Community Foundation Grant
Westchester Jewish Community Services (WJCS) has been awarded a $141,000 grant from Westchester Community Foundation to support families in ParentChild+ (PC+), a WJCS early childhood literacy program in Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow, and to help Jewish families with emergency cash assistance grants.
PC+ works to bridge the achievement gap and advance equity to help marginalized, low-income, and, primarily, immigrant families in Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow. It is a home visiting program that prepares children 16 months and up for school success by increasing language and literacy skills, enhancing social-emotional development, and strengthening the parent-child relationship.
The PC+ program helps parents learn how to increase positive interactions with their children and create language-rich home environments filled with books, games, and conversation. Each week the Early Learning Specialist assigned to each family brings a book or educational toy for the child and models reading, conversation, and play. Studies show that children of families who have participated in the program graduate from high school at a 20% higher rate than their socio-economic peers.
The WJCS Emergency Cash Assistance program for Jewish families in need helps families with costs associated with their children’s education (tutors, tuition), special needs (evaluation, therapists) and well-being, such as helping with the cost of summer camp so parents who work, are seeking employment, or are ill can be assured of proper supervision for their child while their child also has an enriching summer experience. A recent Pew survey, conducted in 2021, found that 38% of Jewish respondents said they or someone in their household lost a job or suffered a pay cut since the beginning of the pandemic.
“We, at WJCS, are so grateful to Westchester Community Foundation for their support of ParentChild+, which will provide a better future for the children in the program and subsequent generations,” said WJCS CEO Seth Diamond. “The financial help provided by this grant to help Jewish families who are struggling financially and can barely make ends meet will enable them to access childcare, services, and activities that they, otherwise, would have been denied.”
Westchester Community Foundation’s mission is to connect generous people to the causes they care about and invest in transformative ideas and organizations to improve lives and strengthen the community. WCF is a division of The New York Community Trust, one of the largest community foundations in the country with assets of approximately $3 billion.