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September 23, 2014
36 people found this review helpful

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Review from Guidestar
September 23, 2014
36 people found this review helpful

Going to FEGS was one of the biggest mistakes of my life. I was misdiagnosed and mistreated for two illnesses since I began to get sick when I was thirteen years old and in early 2000 (at age 30) I was correctly diagnosed and started treatment and surgeries to get my self back into life. Having been out of life for over a decade and a half I thought that I would contact Jewish Organizations so I sent out letters explaining my situation to nearly a dozen of these top Jewish organizations in May 2001. You can imagine how tough it is without a solid job history or accomplishments socially or academically. My parents were survivors of the Holocaust and I had gone to Yeshiva but over the years I had become a secular Jew. My father had died in a car accident and subsequently I lost my sister- all I had left was an ailing mother. After a month I received no reply from anyone, except in June I got a call from the executive secretary of Jonas Waizer the CFO of FEGS asking me to come down for a meeting.

Now in the letters that I mailed out all I asked was for was advice, guidance, mentoring... No request was made for monetary assistance or anything else. I just wanted help in getting back into life. I even provided physician letters corroborating my conditions. Well I met Dr. Waizer at his executive office at Hudson st- entering the separate executive building entrance and elevator. I spent nearly a half an hour with him as he talked about himself and I added some details regarding my predicament. I was 31 years old and neither myself nor my family had ever asked for help from anyone before and we never were on any type of assistance. During the meeting Gail Magaliff (the CEO of FEGS) came in and sat down on Dr. Waizer's couch. He spoke to her about my situation and asked her if she had any ideas. She sat there for a minute in silence and simply got up and left the room. Finally Dr. Waizer showed me to the door and told me that he would be in touch. I waited a month and a half and no one got back to me, so in early August of 2001 I called his office and was told that he was on vacation and there was no message for me. I left a message on his answering machine and by the end of August 2001 I got a call to come down to FEGS at Hudson street again.

In the final days of August 2001, I met with a woman at the FEGS executive office who signed me up for something she called "benefits" and she said she would help me get them. Well I was fast tracked by FEGS into SSI/SSD, Foodstamps, Medicare and Medicaid... In less than two months I got all these "benefits". I got these things that I never asked for. I assumed that NYC has such a large Jewish population that there must be some organization that could provide training, guidance, and mentoring in order so I could get back into life itself. So why call me for a meeting in the first place when I never even wrote to FEGS ? I never even heard of FEGS before. At first I thought maybe this was a fluke but I soon learned from others that this was standard practice at FEGS. In retrospect I should have declined these "gifts" and "benefits" as the woman described them, and continued looking for some help in getting a foothold back in society. Instead these "benefits" did just the opposite- dependence, isolation, and marginalization from society and life.

But the real tragedy is that for secular Jews in America there is NO ONE and NO Organization that will really help another secular Jew and secular Jews know this very well. And this is a major reason why so many American Jews are abandoning their identity as Jews. Yes religious organizations and people were willing to help me ONLY if I returned to being Orthodox- which I was not willing to do. I was not willing to lie and claim that I was religious and do the opposite. It is so sad since over the years I have met many young secular American Jews who are in deep trouble and they are drowning from mental and physical ailments or from some unfortunate circumstances of life itself. In the "system" they have no where to go but down. There is NO future for secular non-affiliated Jews in NYC and America because they know that for all the talk there is NOTHING behind it. It is everyone for themselves; As long as my immediate family is doing fine who cares about other Jews. The leadership today has failed as they did in the past. What is worse is that now they have all the means and the where with all to really turn the tide. This is NOT the case for the Orthodox communities who tend to help one another advance in life. Look for yourself: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/01/us/poll-shows-major-shift-in-identity-of-us-jews.html?_r=0

It is even more ironic since in NYC American Jews as an ethnic group have reached such levels of accomplishments in virtually all areas of society, business, science, and culture. Yet as in the Holocaust, leadership -both secular and clergy have failed Jews in desperate need. FEGS from my experience as with other Jewish organizations does little or nothing for American Jews except direct them to government programs. According to Federal statistics 98% of people on Disability are on it for life. Only 2% get off. FEGS made me (someone who was independent and just getting by) dependent for life. I recall a social worker years ago starting out a sentence saying "You Jews..." as if we are one of some cohesive group that is symbiotically related to one another.

This is nonsense since nothing has changed since the Holocaust where average Jews had no chance against the Nazis and fought one another against each other. Today is the same where each one is interested in his own affairs and as long as I am okay and my kids are okay then everything is fine. As long as that other village or town full of Jews is being shot and driven into open pits who cares since it is not happening in my village or town. Secular American Jews know that there is no community at all for them and sadly they lose their identity and even interest in Israel and the Holocaust. Endless amount of money is spent on memorializing the Holocaust/Israel and rightly so but what about young American secular Jews living today? Imagine if a private Jewish organization arose to provide this population with a real genuine community and center for return and assistance? Nah! that would never happen with all these non-profit business models that really are job programs that really help the people who work there-NOT the people who really desperately need real help. It is not surprising that recent demographics in NYC secular Jewish population numbers are dwindling. They are dying breed.

Are we our brother's keeper? No, and FEGS should be ashamed of itself with its phony website claims and public relations publicity and propaganda outreach that purports to be one thing and really is another. Handing off people to gov't programs, food stamps, SSI/SSD, Medicare, Medicaid, assigning a case worker and a psychiatrist to drug and manage case load... Is that the Jewish way to help people become INDEPENDENT? The goal of a non-profit is to put itself out of business by accomplishing its mission statement not perpetuating peoples suffering and misery for its own benefit and growth. FEGS is a monster that feeds off the misery and suffering of others. The more people are on disability and government programs the better for FEGS because that is how they get payed-from its target audience who is forever on government programs for life.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

FEGS is a Jewish Organization that once was an organization that really helped Jews in NYC get into American Life and become productive citizens in 1930's to the late 1960's. It needs to go back to providing training, guidance, mentoring, meaning, community and placement for American Jews in need. It abandoned it's own kind for a universal watered down outreach that really creates people who are dependent on government programs for life.

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How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

None

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

No

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Badly

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2001

August 8, 2010
147 people found this review helpful

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Review from Guidestar
August 8, 2010
147 people found this review helpful

FEGS is a giant bureaucracy that is a giant JOBS program that takes advantage of the opportunies available to "serve" the mentally ill, jobless, homeless, aged by their unique "Health and Human Services System". According to their latest 990 they recieve $112,018,230 a year nearly entirely from the U.S. government (US taxpayers). FEGS's Salary and Pension plans amount to almost $121,000,000 a year! One "employee" named Alfred P. Miller recieved $2,170,301 that year. The only people that FEGS really helps is it's own "workers" with large salaries for it's senior staff. ONE HOUR FOR LUNCH ALWAYS. 448 of it's staff make OVER $50,000 a year. The Senior VP Gladys Siff makes over $350,000 a year! Nearly ALL the REVIEWS here are written by FEGS employees. They operate a home attendant and homecare nonprofits so if you need a job as a low payed health care worker they can get you a job, otherwise just go to WORKFORCE ONE. They spend millions on lobbying. Their biggest and most successful program is getting "benefits" for people. That is right they simply direct people to foodstamps, SSI, SSD, welfare, medicaid, medicare, housing programs... Actually the worse the economic situation the "better" FEGS does for itself. If you are a critic of FEGS their PR department will roll out examples of the hopeless and helpless that they saved! In a jobless economy FEGS has nothing to offer except a "program" funded by the U.S. Government and employeed by FEGS workers. FEGS TRADEMARKED "PARTNERSHIPS FOR A CHANGING WORLD" AND BRINGING RESOURSES TO PEOPLE AND BUSINESS". THEY TAKE YOUR TAXPAYER MONEY AND CREATE JOBS FOR THEMSELVES. They spent $2,000,000 for a fundraiser and came out $80,000 in the RED.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have personally experienced the results of this organization and that was just to direct me to the U.S. government programs such as foodstamps, heap, medicaid, mediacre, SSI and SSD.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

FEGS mission statement should be straight foward and simple. Currently it's mission statement is childish and inaccurate. It speaks about "achieving greater independence" but is dependent on gov't handouts, guides others to become dependent on handouts.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

They claim to change the world but all they really do is direct you to city, state, and government programs. If you do not belong to a group that is severly disabled you likely can not be helped since their programs target these populations.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Business like and very bureucratic. They act like they have so much to offer and they really have little except government programs. Exclusive luxury offices at 315 Hudson street. No wonder why FEGS pays $20,000,000 rent a year.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

This organization is well connected and has NOT adapted to the new economy. It is bloated and should close down it's employment and guidance programs and focus only on health related programs for the mentally ill and aged.

Ways to make it better...

They were honest and truthful and right away tell me that they have nothing and just go and apply for x,y,z. But they can't admit that since it's a job program for FEGS itself.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

FEGS is stuck in the 1980's the US is in a "JOBLESS recovery" meaning that there are very few jobs to go around. You don't need FEGS to get a job. Back then they had training courses for typists and wordprocessors and could get you jobs.

One thing I'd also say is that...

If FEGS continues to get such large amounts of government money they should be required to should show exactly HOW MANY PEOPLE USED FEGS EMPLOYMENT SERVICES AND HOW MANY IT GOT JOBS FOR. It should recieve money based only on results!

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2001

November 11, 2009
1 person found this review helpful

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8 previous reviews - show all
November 11, 2009

I did not have a lot of work experience when I came to FEGS for employment counseling. The job developer helped me realize my skills that may be relevant to a home health aid position. Because of the ... more

November 11, 2009
1 person found this review helpful

I was interested in finding a job as a medical assistant, but I was having trouble finding an open position. I came to FEG and the job developer sent me on an interview almost right away. I received the job, and I am very happy to be working in my chosen field. *review written from job developer's email

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

how fast and effectively the job developer's work with the clients.

More feedback...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

November 11, 2009

I did not have a lot of work experience when I came to FEGS for employment counseling. The job developer helped me realize my skills that may be relevant to a home health aid position. Because of the job developer's help I received a job as a home health aid. *review written from job developer's email

More feedback...

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

very helpful in my search for a job. They took their time to talk to me about the kind of job I wanted and the kind of job I was qualified to do.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

November 11, 2009

I came to FEGS to speak with a job developer because it was hard for me to find a job. She found me a job as a billing clerk. I have been working at that position for about a year now. *review written from job developer's email

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the help they provided me to utilize my skills and knowledge to obtain the position that I currently have.

More feedback...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008

November 11, 2009

I came to FEGS earlier this year to meet with a job developer about finding employment. I was referred to a job as a waiter. I enjoy my job and am very grateful to the job developer for helping me find a steady job. *review written from job developer's email

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the wonderful service they provide for their clients.

More feedback...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

November 11, 2009

I was unemployed and needed help finding a job. I was referred to FEG for employment counseling. The job developer sent me on an interview with a home health aid agency. I was offered the job of a home health aid, and I am very happy to be working. *review written from job developer's email

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the care that the staff takes with their clients. The job developers try to find their clients jobs as fast as possible.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

November 11, 2009

In early 2009 I came to FEGS's Brooklyn Resource Center to see a job developer about finding a job. She found me a job as a home health aid with a great agency. *review written from job developer's email

More feedback...

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

very pleasant to talk to, and they made me feel comfortable going to them for help.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

November 10, 2009

I came to FEGS because I needed a job. I was referred to one of their job developers, who found me a sales person position. After some time of working as a sales person, I wanted to change my career. I came back to the job developer and she found me a home health aid job that provided me with better benefits. *review written from job developer's email

More feedback...

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

easy to talk to and understanding of my employment needs.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

November 10, 2009

I was unemployed and needed help finding a job where I was able to make a decent living. I was referred to FEG's job developer, who refereed me to a home health aid agency. I have been working there since 2008. *review written from job developer's email

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the great work that they do by finding people jobs.

More feedback...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008

November 10, 2009

I came to FEGS in 2008 because I wanted to become a home health aid. I met with a job developer who referred me to a home health aid agency that was hiring. After working there for some time I wanted to find a job in the same field that offered more benefits. I came back to the job developer who helped me find my fist job and I told her my situation. She was more than happy to help me again, and referred me to another home health aid agency that offered the benefits that I was looking for. *review written from job developer's email

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the dedication they have to providing great service to their clients.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008

November 10, 2009

more


6 previous reviews - show all
November 10, 2009

In 2006 I came to FEGS for citizenship classes and for employment assistance. The staff I met was very kind and helpful. I met with a civics instructor who helped me learn what I needed to know to rec... more

November 10, 2009

I came to FEGS's Brooklyn Resource Center because I was out of work and needed help finding a job. The employment counselor found me a great job as an office manager at an electric company. As a way of giving back and thanking FEGS, I help place clients from the Brooklyn Resource Center in the company that I now work for. *review written from employment counselor's email

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

that after FEGS helped me, I was able to give back by providing jobs for other FEGS clients in my company.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

November 10, 2009

In 2006 I came to FEGS for citizenship classes and for employment assistance. The staff I met was very kind and helpful. I met with a civics instructor who helped me learn what I needed to know to receive my citizenship. Since I was also in need of a job, I had the pleasure of meeting one of FEGS's employment counselors who found me a job as a home health aid. *review written from Employment Counselor's email

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the services that they provided for me. The staff is very friendly and willing to help its clients with their needs.

More feedback...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2006

November 9, 2009

In 2007 I came to FEGS Brooklyn Resource Center to see an employment counselor regarding a job. The employment counselor found me a great job in a medical office working the front desk. *review written from employment counselor's email

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the care that the staff gives to the clients.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2007

November 9, 2009

I am studying to become a physician's assistant and I wanted a job that would provide me with experience in that field. I came to FEGS for help finding a job in a medical office. The Employment Counselor that I met with found me a job as a Medical Assistant. *review written from Employment Counselor's email

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my own need for employment assistance.

More feedback...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2006

November 9, 2009

As a part time College student I needed to find a job. I was referred to FEGS Brooklyn Resource Center to speak with an employment counselor. The Employment Counselor was very helpful and found me a job as an administrative assistant.

More feedback...

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

very nice and eager to help me.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

November 9, 2009

In 2006 I was out of work and came to FEGS to meet with an Employment Counselor for help. I was referred to a job as an electrician. I have been working there for the past three and I am very happy with my job. *review written on Employment Counselor's email

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

their help with finding me a stable job, so that I can earn a decent living and support my self.

More feedback...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2006

November 9, 2009

I came to FEGS in 2006 for assistance with finding employment. I met with an Employment Counselor who was very caring and wanted to help me with my job search. She found me a job that suited my experience and skills. Unfortunately, due to the economic situation i found myself unemployed again. Once more I came to my Employment Counselor and asked for help. She was more than happy to help me file for unemployment, so that I was able to meet my financial obligations while she continued to look for another job for me. *review written from Employment Counselor's email

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

how thorough the staff is. They provide exceptional services to their clients.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

November 9, 2009

more

November 9, 2009

I came to FEGS with my husband for the Healthy Marriage Program. After one of the sessions we confided in our case manager about our difficult financial situation. I was looking for a job to support myself and my husband, because he was sick and unable to work. I was referred to a job developer who sent me to free Home Health Aid training classes. After training I got a job as a Home Health Aid. FEGS found that my husband was eligible for SSI and SCRIE Program. Today I am working and my husband collects SSI. We are very grateful to FEGS and our case manager for the help in our time of need. *review written from case manager's email.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the help that they provided to my family.

More feedback...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

November 9, 2009

more

November 9, 2009

I came to FEGS in 2003 for employment services. I have been on unemployment for a few months at that time and really needed to find a job. I attended DCIC School and several students recommended that I visit the FEGS location in Brooklyn. Here I met a wonderful Employment Counselor who in two short weeks found me a job at Abigail Press Inc. as a manager with great benefits. Unfortunately, after four years the company moved and I once again was out of a job. I came back to FEGS to see their Employment Counselor, Olga, who recommended me for a job at FEGS's Brooklyn location as a Program Assistant. I successfully passed the interview with the office manager, and recieved a job offer. I have been working for FEGS for the past year and a half. I am very greatful to FEGS and their Employment Counselors for their help in my time of need.

More feedback...

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

very helpful in my time of need of employment.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008

November 5, 2009

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November 5, 2009

Seeking employment for several months I was referred to FEGS by a family friend. This friend forwarded my Resume to an FEGS staff member. On the same day my Resume was forwarded the staff member called me, explained about an open position and asked if I was interested. Within the hour the Organization hiring called me and an interview was set for the following day. Within two weeks I was hired.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the turn-around time. I was called immedately after they received my Resume and the job was offered soon after my interview.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 30, 2009

more

October 30, 2009

I have a very good relationship with my therapist in the FEGS clinic and they referred mre to manhattan IPRT program.They helped me with suggestions to deal with my medical problems too. I find the IPRT program invigorating and time goes fast, it activates my mind and keeps me going everyday. I have hope that things will be better in my life. I look forward to coming in here everyday. It's a clean facility and everything is run properly and in good control. I enjoy the com- raderie of my peers. The staff is very professional and treat people with respect and I find them very uplifting. I enjoy the yoga, brain-gym/cognitive skills groups and wellness groups and weekend planning group. I want to get back to work and I like that they help people get back on their feet and add more meaning to their life. I can't say enough positive things about this place.

More feedback...

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

very professional.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 30, 2009

more

October 30, 2009

I have been working towards my goal of employment at FEGS Manhattan IPRT Program and been going to exposure activities to learn about different resources. I attended different consumers forums with staff and learned alor. I have also made a lot of friends since I have been coming to the program. IPRT and the staff is helpful and attentive. Everyone on the program staff is nice and caring. I llok forward to coming to IPRT. We help each other and exchange ideas in the groups. The staff, interns and clients get along like a family. In IPRT we care about each other and the staff does its best to help us with our goals.

More feedback...

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

very helpful.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 30, 2009

more

October 30, 2009

My experience is rthat I havwe been coming to FEGS Manhattan IPRT for over a year now and it has been a wonderful experience for me. I have improved my social skills and become a more well rounded person. I have been able to deal better with my symptoms and feel I am progressing in my recovery. Working with the staff has been rewarding because thety are very easy to work with and they help me with making better decisions to improve the quality of my life. I have already received help in accomplishing my housing goal and now I llok forward to achieving my goal in education, going back to college. I have met peers in the program who have become my good friends.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

getting housing after being homeless for about a year.

More feedback...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

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