Local Nonprofit Organizations Combine to Form Easter Seals TriState
Easter Seals Work Resource Center and Jewish Vocational Service join forces to improve access to services for Tristate communities
June 27, 2012 -- CINCINNATI-- Easter Seals Work Resource Center, a nonprofit empowering individuals with disabilities and disadvantages to increase their independence through employment, and Jewish Vocational Service, a Cincinnati nonprofit dedicated to empowering individuals by serving those with developmental challenges and those in need of career and education assistance, announced today that they will combine as Easter Seals TriState, effective July 1.
The combination of two independently strong organizations will create one of the largest human services providers in the region.
Easter Seals WRC and JVS serve more than 15,000 individuals – including adults with disabilities and disadvantages, at-risk youth and veterans. Easter Seals TriState will offer better access to life enriching experiences through work opportunities and programs. All services offered individually by Easter Seals WRC and JVS will remain intact, including job placement and on-site employment in packaging and fulfillment centers, career readiness programs, school-to-work transition programs, and work-based training. Serving Butler, Clermont, Hamilton and Warren counties, the scope of JVS and Easter Seals WRC’s joint resources will total nearly $15 million in revenue with nearly 275 people employed by the combined agency.
The Jewish community career and education programs are not included in the combination, but will continue uninterrupted under the new name JVS Career Services. JVS Career Services will continue to play a key role in helping our Jewish community meet the career and business opportunity goals of Cincinnati 2020, our community’s initiative to transform Cincinnati into a model community and Jewish destination.
“Our vision for Easter Seals TriState is clear. As one, we are more empowered to transform the communities we serve through more dynamic and more robust service offerings,” said Easter Seals WRC president and CEO Pam Green, who will serve in the same role with Easter Seals TriState. “This integration makes sense because it will improve the experience of the individuals we serve by helping them find the confidence and fulfillment that comes from being part of and contributing to society in meaningful ways.”
Peter Bloch, JVS president and CEO, will continue in the same role for JVS Career Services and will serve as executive vice president, integration, for Easter Seals TriState. Bloch initiated the discussions last year, when longtime Easter Seals WRC president and CEO Lisa J. FitzGibbon announced her retirement. “Major organizational changes provide a great opportunity for nonprofits to re-evaluate strategies and operations,” explained Bloch. “Our organizations have similar missions and we have a long history of collaborating successfully. Uniting under the Easter Seals national brand strengthens our combination by positioning us to better leverage resources locally and nationally through a highly respected, globally recognized organization.”
“The formation of Easter Seals TriState is a bold step for JVS and Easter Seals WRC that helps move forward the larger Bold Goals for Our Region and betters what we do as nonprofits for the Cincinnati region as a whole,” said Robert C. Reifsnyder, United Way of Greater Cincinnati president and CEO. “It’s encouraging to see two of Cincinnati’s strongest community service organizations come together to create something stronger than the sum of their parts. United Way was pleased to provide early funding to help make this combination of two United Way agency partners happen.”
Easter Seals TriState is following a growing national and local trend. As nonprofits form partnerships and share allocations, they weave a network that better serves the entire community. Together, they reduce duplication, streamline finances, and better leverage funding and services.
Through Easter Seals TriState, a comprehensive array of services will be more readily available in more locations where people in need of services live and work, an outcome that improves their quality of life by more effectively providing the means to contribute to their communities in work and leisure activities.
“Easter Seals WRC and JVS have special places in the hearts of many. To our staff, volunteers, and the people we serve, we will maintain our commitment to improving lives every day through our mission and services,” said Green. “This decision is a strategic and important step to ensure a more sustainable future for the organization and its ability to serve the needs of people with disabilities and disadvantages in our community.”