Met Council

'I Deeply Regret The Mistakes'

State probes agency as anti-poverty group's board cites financial misconduct; insurance payments scrutinized.

08/12/2013
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In a bombshell announcement Monday morning, the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty announced that it had terminated its chief executive officer, William Rapfogel, one of the longest-serving Jewish agency heads in the area, citing financial misconduct.

Rapfogel evidently does not plan to dispute the charges against him, saying later in the day in a statement issued by his lawyer that  "I deeply regret the mistakes I have made that led to my departure from the organization" after 21 years of service. 

Rapfogel: Longtime powerful agency head accused of irregularities related to insurance policies.

Rockaways Kosher Food Pantry Hit By Sandy Finally Reopens

07/29/2013
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Nine months after it was shut down by Superstorm Sandy, the Jewish Community Council of the Rockaway Peninsula's  Client Choice food center is back in business.

Stronger than the storm: Rockaways food pantry is back and better than ever.

A Tale Of Two Communities

06/11/2013
Editorial

At first glance, the “Special Report on Poverty,” the third and final part of the 2011 population study of the Greater New York Jewish community that was commissioned by UJA-Federation in consultation with the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, holds no surprises.

Study: One In Five NY Jews In Or Near Poverty

Community struggles to respond to ‘immense’ needs, especially among elderly and chasidic.

06/11/2013
Staff Writer
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A few years out of the State University of New York at Binghamton, where he was a political science major and an active volunteer in several campus activities, Jeremy Levine works every day at the Manhattan headquarters of UJA-Federation of New York, helping to coordinate many of the anti-poverty programs the philanthropy supports.

A man distributes free kosher lunches to children in Williamsburg and Borough Park last summer. Rebecca Saidlower

Gillibrand Announces Kosher Food Bill

Legislation would require USDA to monitor and increase kosher food supply.

11/19/2012
Staff Writer

A New York senator and congressman on Monday announced that they introduced new legislation in Congress to try to ensure that kosher food pantries receive enough food.

The legislation, sponsored by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Congressman Joe Crowley, both Democrats, requires the U.S. Department of Agriculture to make sure it ends up at kosher food banks, according to a press release.

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. Getty Images

Hungry For Jewish Donors

As poverty rates rise, City Harvest is struggling to attract funding for its growing kosher program.

09/27/2012
Staff Writer

Ion Shubernetskiy’s shirt is graying. His hair is thin; his blue sneakers are bargain-bin flimsy. But the 77-year-old Moldovan, a former factory worker, is comfortable cutting corners when it comes to his personal appearance.

“Hey, I buy what I can afford. I don’t go into Manhattan,” he jokes in Russian, through a translator. What he won’t sacrifice is his kashrut, or kosher diet. Keeping kosher under Communism was difficult and dangerous. He won’t stop now, although he lives on public assistance.

Cynthia Zalisky, head of a Queens community center, left, and an associate pack cartons with provisions. Michael Datikash"

Feeding Frenzy In Brooklyn

09/11/2012
Associate Editors

With the weather still hot, summer camp over and the children restless, the last week before school starts can be a challenge for many parents.

All the more so for haredi parents, who on average have more than three times the number of children as other New York Jewish parents, according to a recent UJA-Federation of New York study. While many of the children receive federally subsidized meals at camp and school, during that last week of summer — with no food programs — low-income families often struggle to get everyone fed.

A truck dispatched to Borough Park and Williamsburg passed out over 2,700 meals the week before school started.  Rebecca Saidlow

Tim Boxer: Neil Sedaka and Connie Francis at Friars Foundation Gala

06/10/2011
Special to the Jewish Week

“I was a little pisherkeh from Brighton Beach and Connie Francis gave me my start,” songwriter Neil Sedaka said.

He told how Connie recorded one of his early songs, “Stupid Cupid,” and turned it into a monster hit of the late ‘50s. “It was my ultimate kvell.”

Sedaka took to the piano and serenaded Connie with a medley of his signature songs, including “Breaking Up Is Hard To Do.”

Connie Francis and Neil Sedaka at the Friars awards dinner at the Waldorf. Photo by Tim Boxer

Tim Boxer: Political Plaudits for Met Council

06/05/2011
Special to the Jewish Week

The Celebrate Israel Parade on Fifth Avenue got off to a rousing start Sunday in the Grand Ballroom of the Roosevelt Hotel where a score of politicians mounted the podium to outdo each other in praise of the Jewish homeland.

It's become a tradition for politicos leading the parade to come first to the annual legislative breakfast of the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, now known as Met Council .

Under the direction of board chair Merryl H. Tisch, 16 individuals received leadership awards for their support of the council's efforts to alleviate poverty in New York.

Met Council chair Merryl Tisch, Sylvia Hiat and Sen.Kristen Gillibrand at the legislative breakfast. Photo: Tim Boxer

UJA-Fed. Braces As Proposed State Cuts Hit Three-Year High

02/08/2011
Assistant Managing Editor

Drastic cuts to reduce the state's $10 billion budget deficit proposed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo may cause agencies under the UJA-Federation umbrella to lose as much this year as they have in the past three years combined.

In what the federation calls a "gigantic challenge," agencies providing immigrant services, employment, child care programs will lose about $30 million in revenue and an additional $30 million in foregone funds, such as cost of living increases -- roughly the amount of funding that has been decreased since 2008.

Gov. Cuomo’s budget ax seen hitting the Jewish community hard.
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