Archive for the tag 'nonprofits'

The official Ocean Avenue address of Merkaz, which is also Fetman's home address and an organization under his control, through which he allegedly embezzled the funds. (Source: Google Maps)

The official Ocean Avenue address of Merkaz, which is also Fetman’s home address and an organization under his control, through which he allegedly embezzled the funds. (Source: Google Maps)

The chief financial officer of Manhattan-based nonprofit Aish HaTorah, Jacob Fetman, of Midwood, was charged yesterday with embezzling more than $237,000 from the international Jewish outreach organization through another non-profit under his control.

According to District Attorney Ken Thompson’s office, Fetman routed the organization’s donations through three separate Aish bank accounts that he controlled. From November 2010 to August 2013, he allegedly transferred $922,931.74 of that money to a bank account for Merkaz, a religious organization whose official address is shared with Fetman’s Ocean Avenue home, and which he runs, according to prosecutors. Merkaz is not a part of Aish in any way.

He then bounced some of the money back to Aish – $685,454.43 – a net loss to the organization of $237,477.31, said Thompson’s office.

Aish is one of the largest international outreach organizations in the world, with 30 branches on five continents. Established in 1974, it encourages Jewish people to reconnect with their faith and culture. The organization operates seminars, produces events for Jewish singles, provides education and training to local faith groups and publishes, a leading website for Jewish-related lifestyle and religious content.

Fetman, 45, served as the organization’s CFO for 17 years. Fetman was terminated when Aish officials discovered the banking irregularities.

“This defendant abandoned his duty to safeguard Aish HaTorah’s finances and allegedly stole $237,477 in charitable donations from this venerable non-profit organization. He will now be held accountable,” said Thompson in a press release.

Source: Shorefront Y

The Shorefront YM-YWHA is now offering free legal services to victims of Superstorm Sandy through the New York Legal Assistance Group (NYLAG) and UJA Federation of New York.

If you sustained damage as a result of the October storm and need legal services and advice on topics such as appealing denied claims, disaster-related fraud and mortgage issues for affected homes, you can make an appointment to speak with a lawyer on Mondays and Thursdays from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

The Shorefront Y is located at 3300 Coney Island Avenue. Call (347) 689-1848 to schedule your appointment. The Shorefront Y will work to accommodate language translation. For further information, email

Sandy relief at Shorefront Y. Source: Shorefront Y

The Shorefont YM-YWHA (3300 Coney Island Avenue) is a neighborhood organization that’s rising to the challenge of continuous local disaster recovery in the wake of Superstorm Sandy. Currently, they’re responsible for everything from assigning volunteer contractors, to repairing homes and giving out food, to translating complicated government forms.

Shorefront Y Director Sue Fox has been busy not just with addressing the needs of Sandy victims, but with taking a “peek ahead” at future disasters and positioning the organization to be a major preparedness and relief hub for Southern Brooklyn.

Find out what the non-profit is planning.


Several autistic and developmentally disabled people who previously lived in group homes in Sheepshead Bay are among the hundreds left displaced after Superstorm Sandy took a heavy toll on their facilities.

YAI Network, an organization which manages several such homes in the area, announced today that two of their homes in Sheepshead Bay were severely damaged, causing their autistic and disabled clients to move into temporary digs.

According to the release, one of the homes is on East 13th Street, and the other is on Avenue Z. Both were in Zone A and suffered a combined $300,000 worth of damage, mostly from the approximately eight feet of water that filled the basements.

“This is really like rebuilding the house,” said Vida Mani, the assistant coordinator in YAI’s Residential Department. “There was water and debris all over the place. One washer was on top of another, air conditioning units floated out of the wall, and we had a big refrigerator that ended up on a shelf.”

The East 13th Street home housed 10 residents and the Avenue Z location held six. All residents were evacuated ahead of the storm to different homes throughout Brooklyn, the release notes.

Aside from the damage, YAI said it lost $2.1 million in lost revenue due to a suspension of its day programs and medical practices, as well as overtime costs for workers deployed to help the displaced residents.

“This storm affected everyone,” said Stephen E. Freeman, CEO of YAI. “And it showed us so clearly that the people we support experienced the same sense of loss and disruption of life as other citizens. They couldn’t leave their homes, they couldn’t get to work and they couldn’t see their friends and families.”

Although FEMA reimbursements are expected to cover most of the repairs to the homes, it won’t cover the lost revenues. YAI has established a Storm Restoration Fund to not only cover some of the losses, but to upgrade their 100 group homes with permanent generators to prevent future disruptions. Donations can be made here.

The Brooklyn Community Foundation is well on its way towards providing relief for those devastated by Hurricane Sandy, having raised over $1 million dollars in charitable contributions, and announcing its first requests for proposals from Brooklyn non-profits looking to use the funds to help in the rebuild effort.

The large sum of money raised, coming from large generous donations from Barclays, the Brooklyn Nets, Jerry Seinfeld, Junior’s restaurants, and many more, is ready to begin dispersing the cash via requests put in by local non-profits. The first RFP is for Community Collaborative Grants, which according to the BCF, “will provide three initial grants of $100,000 to consortia of nonprofits working to improve community-wide coordination efforts, in Red Hook (CB 6); Coney Island/Brighton Beach/Sea Gate (CB 13), and Sheepshead Bay/Gerritsen Beach/Canarsie/Manhattan Beach (CBs 15 and 18).” The second RFP is for Emergency Fast-Track Grants, which, “will provide up to $10,000 to Brooklyn-serving nonprofits grappling with Sandy’s aftereffects.”

The efforts of the Brooklyn Community Foundation are providing a vital infusion of cash to the local charities and non-profits that need them, and the deadline for all funding requests is this Friday, November 16, and all monies awarded will be paid out by Friday, November 30. If you want to put in your own request on behalf of your charitable non-profit organization, visit this site for more details. If you’d like to donate, or want more information, please visit the Brooklyn Community Foundation’s website.