Human Services

Gulf Coast Jewish Family and Community Services

aka Gulf Coast JFCS   |   Clearwater, FL   |  WWW.GCJFCS.ORG


Inspired by Jewish values, the mission of Gulf Coast JFCS is to protect the vulnerable and help people achieve fulfilling lives by empowering individuals and strengthening families.

Ruling year info


President and CEO

Dr. Sandra E Braham

Main address

14041 Icot Blvd

Clearwater, FL 33760 USA

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Cause area (NTEE code) info

Children's and Youth Services (P30)

Group Home, Residential Treatment Facility - Mental Health Related (F33)

Services to Promote the Independence of Specific Populations (P80)

IRS filing requirement

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

We work to address human suffering across a broad spectrum of the population from infants to seniors by ensuring children are safe through foster care case management, adoption support services and family training, supporting the independence of frail elders and Holocaust survivors, helping non-custodial parents gain employment to pay their child support, providing counseling for improved health and affordable housing for low-income seniors. We are working to help refugees resettle in the Tampa Bay area in order that they are able to live healthy and fulfilling lives in the United States. We are helping youth to develop by providing mentors and life skills.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Elder and Disabled Services

*Community Care for the Elderly provides case management coordination for homemaker, personal care, respite, and other services to enable frail and functionally impaired elders to remain in their homes and avoid or delay placement in a nursing home. Services are provided in Pinellas County. *Community Care for Disabled Adults offers case management, homemaker services, and a range of other in-home services to help individuals, ages 18-59 who have significant disabilities, live dignified and reasonably independent lives in their own homes. *Elderly Counseling Services support persons 60 years and older who would benefit from individual Gerontological or mental health counseling services that can be provided in-home or conducted at senior centers or various congregate meal sites in Pasco and Pinellas Counties. *Myrtle Oaks is a 99-unit apartment complex for low income elderly located in northeast Tampa. *Egret Housing is a seven-unit housing complex for low income disabled located in New Port Richey.

Population(s) Served
Aging, elderly, senior citizens
People with physical disabilities

Gulf Coast JFCS's Behavioral and Mental Health Services provide a mix of residential treatment facilities and in-home interventions, community outreach, and more. *Darlington Residential Treatment Facility is a 16-bed treatment facility for adults with mental illness and/or a co-occurring substance abuse disorder in Pasco County. *Adult Residential Treatment and Stabilization (ARTS) is a 16-bed residential program in Broward County for older adults who have mental illness and possible co-occurring issues. *Adele Gilbert Residential Treatment Facility is a 16-bed treatment program in Pasco County for adults that are mentally ill and may have co-occurring substance abuse issues. *The Alternative Family Program is based on the therapeutic foster home concept of trained sponsors who open their homes to up to five adults or seniors with mental illness and welcome them into their families. With 190 beds in 75 licensed care homes covering a 36-county area, sponsors provide 24-hour client supervision, care and support in exchange for a monthly stipend. *Older Adults Support Team, in coordination with state Adult Protective Services, provides intervention for elders who are at risk of suicide. *Intervention Services provides in-home substance abuse intervention services for adults who are at risk for substance misuse in Pinellas, Pasco, and Hillsborough Counties. *Prevention Services provides substance abuse education focused on the prevention of medication mismanagement, alcohol abuse, and increasing healthy behaviors in our communities. *Supported Housing and Living Program assists individuals with mental illness or co-occurring substance abuse issues to develop skills needed to live independently.

Population(s) Served
People who abuse drugs, alcohol, or other substances

*Child Welfare Case Management provides protective supervision for children referred by the Florida Abuse Hotline and Child Protective Investigators. *Diversion and Prevention Programs provide intensive in-home family preservation services and with the goal of keeping at-risk children “safe at home.” *Family Reunification Services complement case management services in Hillsborough County and teach parents the skills necessary to improve their protective capacities so that their children can be safely returned to their homes. *Family Services Initiative provides navigation and emergency financial support services for families with school age children in Pinellas County, strengthening family stability and connecting families to appropriate community resources. *Good Afternoon Friends and Amigos is an afterschool program for K-3 students that provides tutoring and social skills development, as well as parental outreach, support, and referral services. *Healthy Youth Transitions provides life coaching and counseling services that help youth in Broward County, FL transition successfully into healthy, independent young adults. *Heart Gallery of Pinellas & Pasco increases the number of successful adoptions of local children in foster care. In addition to featuring children, we recruit and support families interested in adoption. *Kinship Support Program complements case management services by providing direct support to non-licensed caregivers (relatives and non-relatives) of children in the Hillsborough County child welfare system. *Violence Prevention Program is offered in nine Pinellas County middle schools and decreases disruptive, aggressive, bullying behavior and substance abuse, empowering students to improve their academic performance and overall success. *Woman-to-Woman Program supports teen mothers and pregnant girls from Hillsborough County who are at high risk for academic failure and repeat pregnancies, providing mentorship, enrichment activities, and ongoing educational and vocational support. *Young Adult Transitional Program in Broward County provides support and assistance to young adults ages 17-24 who have emotional/behavioral issues or substance abuse and/or persistent mental illness.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth (0-19 years)

In partnership with the state of Florida, NCPEP assists unemployed or underemployed non-custodial parents with establishing a pattern of regular child support payments by obtaining and maintaining unsubsidized, competitive employment. The program was designed to reduce recidivism and keep parents out of jail for failure to make child support payments, while at the same time ensuring children received the financial support they needed to survive. To achieve this, NCPEP tackles a number of serious challenges that face individuals exiting the justice system—a criminal record, a lack of education, insufficient job skills, and a limited or nonexistent support system. NCPEP works closely with local career-training agencies in four Florida counties and provides non-custodial parents with individual case management services, parenting training, short-term job skills training, support in navigating the court system to regain professional licenses, job placement assistance, and financial support to overcome any barriers to employment, such as transportation or purchasing uniforms and supplies. Clients receive life coaching as well as guidance on where to seek assistance for issues like substance abuse or mental health concerns.

Population(s) Served
Unemployed, underemployed, and dislocated people
Incarcerated people and formerly incarcerated people

*Holocaust Survivors Program helps to improve the quality of life for Holocaust survivors in the Tampa Bay area by providing critically needed services and outreach programs so they can remain in their homes. *Emergency Family Support Services offers assistance in meeting basic human needs for the Jewish community in Pinellas and Pasco Counties. *Yad b' Yad (Hand-in-hand) recruits Jewish adult volunteers as mentors, companions, and role models for Jewish children ages 6 to 17.

Population(s) Served
Jewish people
Economically disadvantaged, low-income, and poor people

Through the William & Sally Israel Food Pantry, all clients and families of Gulf Coast JFCS programs have access to food assistance, school supplies, and limited clothing and household goods. The Food Pantry at Gulf Coast JFCS provides non-perishable food, clothing, household goods, and school supplies to support over 2,500 individuals and families throughout the year. The vast majority of those served are low-income, at-risk individuals, including seniors and children. The Food Pantry provides emergency food assistance as well as ongoing access other basic goods that assist our clients in achieving self-sufficiency.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged, low-income, and poor people
Immigrants, newcomers, refugees

*Refugee Resettlement and Placement in Pinellas and Broward Counties resettles refugees from around the world who have been persecuted and fled their home country to come to America. *Refugee Case Management provides intensive case management and supportive services to recently arrived refugees facing barriers to self-sufficiency. *Florida Center for Survivors of Torture is a regional treatment center for survivors of torture and extreme trauma and helps them to access services from providers who have been trained to work effectively and sensitively with this population. FCST serves clients in Tampa and Miami. *Refugee Youth Pathways addresses the educational, language, and employment needs of vulnerable refugee youth ages 16 to 19 to facilitate employment and integration in Tampa Bay.

Population(s) Served
Immigrants, newcomers, refugees
Victims and oppressed people

The Counseling Center provides a safe, private, and compassionate environment for individuals and families in the Tampa Bay community to receive high-quality outpatient counseling services. We tailor our counseling approach to each individual and one-on-one services are provided by highly-qualified mental health professionals who work with you to achieve your personal goals. Clients feel confident working with the Counseling Center because they know it is part of a well-regarded community agency with more than 50 years of expertise providing mental and behavioral health services. The Counseling Center at Gulf Coast JFCS: * Conveniently located in the Clearwater/Largo area * Accepts most insurance plans, Medicare, Medicaid, and private-pay * Offers a sliding scale based on income limitations and funding availability * Provides services to anyone regardless of religion, race, culture, sexual orientation, or physical limitations. Gulf Coast JFCS does not discriminate and makes reasonable efforts to accommodate those with disabilities as stated in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Charting impact

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

What is the organization aiming to accomplish?

1. We aim to strengthen the agency's engagement within the Jewish Community in Pinellas and Pasco Counties. 2. We aim to ensure the sustainability and viability of our programs and contracts by focusing on growth opportunities in our "Areas of Excellence" and on their financial sustainability. 3. We aim to expand fund and resource development. 4. We aim to be a competitive organization that attracts and retains qualified and satisfied employees. 5. We aim to strengthen our agency operations. 6. We aim to increase communication and synergy among our service units. 7 We aim to increase public awareness of Gulf Coast Jewish Family & Community Services. 8. We aim to implement a robust program for recruitment, training and development of Board members and volunteers to ensure future leadership.

1) By identifying focused, strategic agency initiatives for future programming based on the results of the Jewish Demographic Survey; collaborating with other Jewish Organizations; and by refining the role of the agency's Jewish Family Services Advisory Council. 2) By identifying programs “at-risk" of sustainability due to funding and/or contract mandates and develop action plans in response; board strategic analysis of new major initiatives; and, creating a uniform process to focus all managers on identifying partners and related opportunities. 3) By setting and achieving annual financial goals; implementing new and relevant fund development strategies; focusing efforts on donor cultivation; expanding volunteer engagement in agency programs and development; and by, increasing advocacy at local, state and national levels for agency areas of excellence. 4) By focusing efforts on the recruitment, retention, onboarding and training of employees and planning for management succession and learning from exits. 5) By institutionalizing a system for agency-wide risk assessment and management; reviewing, revising and consolidating agency policies; completing the pre-planning and preparation/self-study for 2018-19 CARF Accreditation; and by increasing the use of technology in managing operations. 6) By hosting Agency “Town Hall" Meetings; Identifying and carrying out activities to increase interactions among all agency staff; increasing professional development at all levels of the agency; increasing innovation and strategic thinking within the organization. 7) By modernizing and increasing marketing efforts, social media, and online presence and by increasing communications, outreach, recruitment and engagement of volunteers and stakeholders. 8) By increasing Board engagement through mentoring, committee assignments and program knowledge and by enhancing Board Member recruitment, selection and orientation processes.

Leaders for our agency possess the right training and skills to facilitate this work which is being led by a highly experienced chief executive officer and board, equally engaged in long-term strategic planning. Agency annual objectives have been aligned to these goals and funding has been successfully sought and achieved to support this work. Where internal expertise is lacking, the agency has contracted with experts to assist in facilitating select processes. The CEO has instituted a culture of engagement throughout the agency and involvement of all levels and tenure of staff.

All agency managers and a select team of diverse employees participated in a full-day planning effort with the focus on identifying key tasks, roles, responsibilities, timelines and resources needed to adequately track progress and goal attainment. External funding supports reporting progress in a more formal manner.

There have been multiple full day engagement retreats around each of the identified goals and committees/task forces have been established and are working to move their identified areas of passion forward. We have completed a major demographic survey of the Jewish Community of Pinellas and Pasco Counties, and the results are being disseminated throughout the community. The Leadership team is preparing for its second round of town hall visits across the state to have face to face engagement with all employees. The Board has completed its annual self-assessment to identify opportunities for growth. We have instituted the strategic program review process by the Board to assess the viability of new initiatives. We have ended several initiatives deemed unsustainable and made referrals to partner agencies to fill in the gaps. The agency-wide strategic visioning process, includes staff at all levels and locations throughout the agency and has yielded a number of critical insights into how we can increase employee satisfaction, plan for management succession, and learn from employee exits. Together, we have reimagined the onboarding and orientation process for new hires, enhanced professional development opportunities, and launched innovative methods for connecting across the agency. In early 2019, Gulf Coast JFCS kicked off phase two of this project. Recognizing that our success as an agency and the impact we have on the community is tied directly to the quality and satisfaction of our staff, phase two is a staff-led Retention and Visioning initiative. The project’s four committees represent the diversity of Gulf Coast JFCS, and one committee is dedicated to Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion. It will recommend and support agency activities and priorities that advance representation and cultural competence at all levels.


Gulf Coast Jewish Family and Community Services

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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.


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Connect with nonprofit leaders


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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Gulf Coast Jewish Family and Community Services

Board of directors
as of 8/28/2019
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Ms. Julie Klavans

Board co-chair

Mr. Eric Feder

Jay Miller

J Square Developers

Vivian Benci


Debbie Berner

RBC Capital Markets

Vernon Bryant

Florida Botanical Gardens Foundation

David Delrahim

Attorney Englander Fischer

Eric Feder

Retired Health Administrator

Andrew Hano

Retired Physician

Helen Levine

University of Southern Florida

David Pilkington

Wallace, Welch & Willingham

Abigail Sterensis

Observe 4 Success

Jeff Baker

Duke Energy

Steve Benov

Berkeley Research Group

Evan Christiansen

Real Estate Associate

Karen Raymund Marder

Retired Nurse Practitioner

David Punzak, Esq.

Assistant General Counsel

Elizabeth Samuelson

Physical Therapist

Alan Schwartz

Retired President, Superior Uniform

Becca Tieder

One Student

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes


Homemaker, Elder Independence, Aging-in-Place, Respite, Mental Health, Behavioral Health, Children and Family Services, Refugees, Low-Income, Employment, Human Services, Case Management, Foster Care, Adoption, Caregiver Support, Counseling, Substance Abuse, Jewish, Holocaust