JFS helps seniors, individuals and families live in dignity as they cope with life challenges. $15,000 will close our funding gap for 2012.
First came Sonya’s wrenching decision to leave her home of 70 years, its familiar language, customs and people, to join her daughter and grandchildren in Saint Paul. Making her home with the family, Sonya became a caregiver for the children while her daughter was at work.
Still, Sonya felt lonely and frightened. Being new to the country, she struggled with developing the tools she needed to get around. Every hour of every day can be the scariest kind of adventure when you don’t have the language or knowledge to create a new life for yourself. Her Jewish Family Service case manager helped Sonya to become one of the first to be screened for depression using the Russian translation of the new depression screening instrument developed at JFS. Sonya indeed scored high on the geriatric depression scale.
Sonya was, her case manager learned, feeling isolated and frustrated by her inability to take English classes and more actively participate in her new community. With our help Sonya was able manage the potentially difficult discussion with her daughter regarding reducing her babysitting hours. With her new free time, Sonya entered a day-program that increased her socialization, and enrolled in English classes. A year after her initial screening Sonya no longer tested positive for any depressive symptoms.
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