January 19, 2024

Dear JFCS Family,

While it is cold and snowy outside, the events of this past Monday are still warming my heart and soul! On Monday, January 15th, we hosted the official dedication and grand opening of our new Dr. Edward Rosof Play Therapy Room. More than 60 staff, volunteers, guests, and community leaders gathered in our main suite as we cut the ribbon on this beautiful new therapeutic space.

This event was a powerful statement to the community that we will not allow those who struggle with mental illness to go undiagnosed and untreated any longer. It is a fact that 1 in 6 children struggle with mental health issues and that 50% of all mental illness begins between 10 and 14 years of age. This new space will enable our JFCS clinicians to build rapport and have meaningful communication with our youngest clients. Named for a Dr. Edward Rosof (z’l), a beloved community pediatrician at Advocare Marlton Pediatrics, who was remembered by so many for his compassion, expertise, and commitment to patient care, this space will help us ensure that JFCS can serve the whole child- it reinforces our shared commitment to the emotional, physical, and spiritual well-being of our patients.

I could not think of better way to mark this beautiful occasion than alongside Dr. Rosof’s loving wife, Carol; his devoted daughter, Stephanie; his partners from Advocare Marlton Pediatrics, Dr. Howard Orel, Dr. Jeffrey Blackman, and Dr. Howard Waxman; his grandchildren; and dozens of his friends and colleagues. We were also honored to welcome Cherry Hill Mayor Dave Fleisher; Cherry Hill Township Council Vice President (and JFCS Past President) Michele Golkow; Camden County Commissioner Melinda Kane; and Hazzan Alisa Pomerantz-Boro – longtime friends and supporters of our agency and the Rosof family. I will forever remember the moment where Dr. Rosof’s grandchildren joined Hazzan in affixing the brand new and very colorful beautiful mezuzah, donated by Carol Rosof.

When we stood in the room talking about Dr. Rosof, the colors of the room struck me. The vibrant colors of the rainbow surrounding Dr. Rosof’s grandchildren gave me pause for consideration of Dr. Rosof’s legacy – not only his own grandchildren but the health and well-being of future generations. In Judaism, the rainbow represents– a deep covenant between G-d and our community to improve the world around us. It represents hope and the promise of all that is to come. A partnership between everyone that we will build a better and brighter future together.

It is also most fitting that this beautiful event took place on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Dr. King famously said that “Everybody can be great…because anybody can serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.”

Service is at the heart of everything JFCS does – and this beautiful new space will enable us to offer enhanced services to our South Jersey community. I am deeply thankful for the vision and partnership of our philanthropists at Advocare Marlton Pediatrics – Dr. Howard Orel, Dr. Jeffrey Blackman, and Dr. Howard Waxman – for recognizing our community’s need for such a space and generously donating the funds to make it happen. I am also grateful to the talented and dedicated team that spearheaded this huge undertaking: our former Associate Executive Director, Beth Wynne, and her volunteer team of Miriam Feldman, Susan Meklinsky, and Sharon Weingart.

If you would like to learn more about play therapy at JFCS or know someone who needs support, visit our website at https://jfcssnj.org/play-therapy or give us a call at (856) 424-1333.

Wishing you peace and love this Shabbat and always.

All my best,