Part 1 – Overview of JFS, Nimble and Innovative Response to COVID-19, Discussion about Community Partnerships
An Interview with Lino Covarrubias on the Impact of COVID-19, conducted by Deb Merkin, JFS Board Member and CEO/Founder of GiftCard Partners:
“I recently sat down with Lino Covarrubias, CEO of JFS of Metrowest to discuss how the organization has had to adjust during the COVID-19 pandemic to serve the Metrowest Community. Lino, thanks for meeting with me!
“Can you first tell me what groups of people does JFSMW service on a normal basis?”
“What do you see as the key changes JFS has made during the COVID-19 Pandemic?”
Although JFS is founded on Jewish principles, the organization services the entire Metrowest community including Jewish Community members and the broader community concentrating on three areas:
- Older Adults Aged 60+
- Immigrant & Resettlement Services
- Assistance to Jewish Families experience financial distress
“Prior to the pandemic, it was my vision to make “collaborative” connections and partnerships with organizations that will help us provide vital services to the community. I wanted the organizations to know who JFS is and suggest ways to work together. We don’t want to compete with or duplicate efforts. Our service model is not to overlap with other agencies but rather create partnerships in order to match the needs of the communities we serve and enhance our impact.
An example of this is our collaborative partnership with Daniel’s Table, an organization that provides food security to the greater Framingham community. We work with Daniel’s Table, even going so far as to help them secure funding, so they may support the community. That strategy has really paid off during the pandemic. Serving as a convener and facilitating a broad “collaboration” across agencies–faith-based organizations, Not-for-Profits, and government-sponsored organizations such as the MetroWest Health Foundation, and the South Middlesex Opportunity Council (SMOC)–has allowed us to provide services to communities in need. These partnerships have afforded JFS the opportunity to take on more complex situations that have happened during the COVID-19 pandemic.