The Multiplier Effect: Impacting the Community Through Trainings and Workshops

Westchester Jewish Community Services (WJCS) was founded in 1943 with a small grant from UJA. It has grown from serving a small number of Jewish families to delivering programs and services to 20,000 Westchester residents in need each year. Many of those services involve individual one-on-one counseling sessions and support groups. At WJCS, they also magnify their impact by providing Community Trainings and Workshops for people residing in Westchester. These programs are an important way to educate, empower, and enhance the skills of school staff, parents, law enforcement and other first responders, government employees, and members of community and faith-based organizations.


Here is a brief list and description of community workshops and trainings offered by WJCS. Contact the person listed for each program if you would like more information.


ADOLESCENT MENTAL HEALTH–One in 5 adolescents suffer from a mental illness. This workshop educates participants about adolescent development and the warning signs and symptoms of mental disorders. It provides tools and strategies to enable individuals to support these youth and refer them to appropriate professional help. Contact: Caitlin Leon at


TRAUMA 101–The influential Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) study showed the high prevalence of trauma in the general population and the correlation of trauma exposure to negative health outcomes across physical, social, and emotional functioning. This training focuses on understanding how trauma may manifest in various settings as well as the impact of the pandemic on many individuals. It sensitizes attendees to behaviors that may be caused by trauma and strengthens their repertoire of trauma-sensitive responses. The trauma workshop can be modified for specific audiences, including teachers, essential workers, legal experts, and staff re-entering the workspace after working from home during the pandemic. For school and parent trainings, contact Caitlin Leon at For trainings for essential workers, public interest groups, community partners, and legal experts, contact Liane Nelson, Ph.D. at


VICARIOUS TRAUMA–Vicarious (also known as secondary) trauma refers to the duress an individual experiences when working with individuals who themselves are undergoing significant stress. Left untreated, it can cause significant disruption to the lives of individuals and detract from their ability to conduct their professional responsibilities. This training provides techniques to deal with the emotional toll of an individual’s job, recognize the warning signs for those experiencing trauma, and offers resources on where to go for help. Contact Liane Nelson, Ph.D. at


MENTAL HEALTH FIRST AID–WJCS offers Youth, Teen, and Adult Mental Health First Aid trainings. These evidence-based courses are designed to help attendees recognize risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems in these different age groups. It gives them the skills to have supportive conversations with people experiencing a mental health crisis or challenge and how to get appropriate help so the crisis can be resolved. Contact: Caitlin Leon at


LGBTQ+ Education–WJCS Center Lane, the only center for LGBTQ+ youth in Westchester, offers education for youth and adults, including parents, school staff, students, physicians, therapists, community-based organizations, social service organizations, and faith communities. Presentation topics include: Creating Inclusive Environments and Safe Spaces, LGBTQ+ Bullying Prevention and Intervention, and Talking Trans with Kids (Elementary, Middle and High School versions). To learn more and schedule a training, contact