Spotlight: Jewish Family Service of San Antonio

Everyone is welcome to benefit from JFS resources

One in five adults experience mental health illness each year, according to the National Alliance of Mental Illness.

SAN ANTONIO – Do you know someone that could use mental health counseling?

One in five adults experience mental health illness each year, according to the National Alliance of Mental Illness.

Fighting the stigma is hard and there’s an organization committed to help.

Since 1973, Jewish Family Service of San Antonio has provided affordable services such as mental health counseling.

Jewish Family Service (JFS) provides affordable mental health counseling and psychiatry, serves children, adults, families, couples, victims of crimes, group therapy classes, such as anger management, social and senior services, case management for seniors and their families, therapy specific for seniors, such as art or animal therapy and advocacy to local, state and national officials for the need of mental health and social services.

The services are available to all, regardless of age, race, faith, sexual orientation, or economic status.

“In the past year, through our work with the San Antonio Mobile Mental Wellness Collaborative and partnering with the Spurs organization on their inaugural Mental Health Awareness Night, I’ve seen a shift in our community needing/wanting more open dialogue about mental health,” said Talli Dolge, CEO of Jewish Family Service of San Antonio. “People crave it. They want it. One of the many ways JFS could be of service to the greater San Antonio community is to provide more educational opportunities in relation to the subjects of mental health and wellness. Education outside of your typical counseling session.”

JFS also offers free seminars such as Silver Solutions and for grandparents raising grandchildren. The Silver Solutions event is a free, one-day seminar for seniors to get resources for living long and aging strong.

Through COVID-19, JFS has provided HIPAA-compliant teletherapy to clients.

“We started an Ask A Therapists blog to help answer common questions that people had about mental health issues,” said a representative for Jewish Family Service.

The senior services team delivered goods and food to seniors who were homebound during the quarantine. They’ve also found creative ways to keep in touch with clients they can’t see in person, such as writing letters to them.

Currently, JFS is offering the following online seminars:

  • Anxiety in the Face of a Pandemic: Created at the beginning of the pandemic to talk about what anxiety looks like, plus tips and tricks on how to overcome anxiety.
  • Resiliency: The Ordinary Magic – Where people can learn how to build a resiliency toolbox so that they can overcome difficult times in their lives.

“These services are very important in our community because a lot of the services that have been provided before were not meeting the time frame of the students and they were missing school,” said Marc Mendiola, a senior at South San Antonio High School. “Also, the previous options weren’t serving the bilingual community. The Collaborative makes sure that the services are convenient, free and affordable for anyone in the district and really gives that transparency that the students need.”

Jewish Family Service was the lead agency in creating the San Antonio Mobile Mental Wellness Collaborative in 2019. The group now serves three school districts (South San, Edgewood and Harlandale ISDs) in providing a holistic approach to mental wellness by going into the schools to offer individual and group counseling, psychiatry, education, and more to students, parents, teachers and administrators.

JFS is guided by the Jewish values of “repairing the world” and “taking responsibility for each other.”

To learn more about Jewish Family Service of San Antonio, click or tap here.

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