COUNSELING • SUPPORT • DISCUSSION GROUPS
Shalom Austin Jewish Family Service strengthens the community by empowering all individuals and families
through affordable and culturally sensitive social services to maintain wellness and dignity across the lifespan.
JFS serves people regardless of race, religion, disability, gender or sexual orientation.
Shalom Austin Jewish Family Service (JFS) is the professional human and social service branch of Shalom Austin and a beneficiary of the Shalom Austin Annual Campaign. JFS provides a wide array of mental health and support services to the Jewish community and to the wider Austin community, including counseling and psychotherapy, support groups, case management, emergency financial assistance, and community consultation and education programs. JFS also provides consultation related to the inclusion of people with disabilities in services and programs in the Austin Jewish community.
Counseling, Discussion Groups & Psychoeducation
Jewish Family Service offers both one-on-one counseling with a licensed therapist and support groups.
Jewish Family Service provides case management services to individuals experiencing life transitions, emergency situations, and more.
Jewish Family Service provides references and resources to help with community needs of any kind.
Volunteer to give back and help others in the community and around the world.
Jewish Family Service offers mediation services for families dealing with conflicts around divorce, aging, and more.
Shalom Austin Jewish Family Service serves people regardless of race, religion, disability, gender or sexual orientation.
MEET OUR STAFF
JFS also has social work and counseling interns, and works closely with contract therapists to provide a wide array of services. Contact Emma Howitt at email@example.com to learn more about these offerings. To be connected with one of our therapists, please complete this form.
Rabbi Amy B. Cohen, LMSW
JFS Executive Director / Chief Social Services Officer
In her role as CSSO, Rabbi Cohen’s focus is primarily on capacity building, seeking out new funding sources and opportunities to collaborate…
Emma Howitt, LPC-S, LCDC
JFS Clinical Director
Emma brings more than ten years experience counseling individuals, couples and families dealing with issues such as depression substance abuse, relationships, and life transitions…
Emily Bray, LMSW
Individual and Couples Therapist
Emily Sasser Bray is a Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW) with fifteen years of experience in the Austin mental health and social services community. Emily specializes in treating women in the perinatal period, couples, parents, and adults…
Audrey Burnett, LMSW
Clinical Intake Specialist/Therapist
A born and raised Texan, Audrey Burnett has ten years of experience working with junior high and high school-aged youth. As a participant in the Gerontological Resources and the Aging Community in Education at the Steve Hicks School of Social Work…
Christina Gietz, PhD
Christina Gietz is a Provisionally Licensed Psychologist. She completed two post-doctoral internships in nursing homes/assisted living facilities. She enjoys working with older adults…
Alyssa Gilden is a Licensed Psychologist and a Licensed Specialist in School Psychology (LSSP). Alyssa specializes in working with children and families to help all find new ways of tackling problems in order to live happier and healthier lives...
Welcome team Coordinator
Angelica moved to Austin 10 years ago to attend the University of Texas at Austin, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in Youth and Community Studies, with a minor in Social Work…
Hilary offers 12 years of vast knowledge working with marginalized clients in various areas. Her understanding and mastery of the needs of those underprivileged and at risk…
Abbey Leff MSW, LMSW
JFS Program Coordinator/ Administrator
Abbey is a Licensed Social Worker with five years of experience working in hospitals and schools, teaching English in Spain, and serving in AmeriCorps. Born and raised in northern Minnesota, Abbey received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology…
Joan E. Maniere
Volunteer and Community Experience Director
Joan is a licensed pediatric speech-language pathologist with previous experience working in sensory gyms, preschools, speech-therapy clinics, and homecare settings…
Adult Programs Coordinator
Born & raised in Austin, Matt can’t imagine living in any other city. He has worked at Shalom Austin since 2017, first in the Youth & Teen department, and then in 2021, he was offered the position of Adult Programs Coordinator.In this role, he has identified a passion toworkwith the Adult 60+ community…
Amanda Mills, LCSW
Amanda Mills is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) trained in EMDR, CBT, and body-based approaches. She works with individuals across the lifespan, with a focus on preteens, teens, and young adults…
Liron is an experienced Gerontologist with a vast background in implementing case management plans in collaboration with patients and caregivers. She is experienced in conducting assessments of patients’ financial mobility and independence…
Emily SieglerEmily utilizes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and a sensorimotor approach in her work with clients as well as relational and mindfulness-based techniques…
Matt Smith, LMSW
Matt Smith has worked for over fifteen years as a social worker and conflict mediator. As an individual therapist, his practical, supportive approach helps people build a greater sense of control in their lives…
Rachel Moved to Austin 4 years ago by way of Colorado. She has spent the last 12 years working in various administrative roles and has loved them all. Rachel grew up at the JCC in Denver attending theatre camps every summer…
Senior Social Services Director
Rachel has more than 15 years experienceas a professional in non–profit organizations. She brings previous experience working at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and the University of Texas. She has honed years ofconstituency management and leadership skills…
Ensuring that high quality professional counseling remains available to people of all income levels continues to be a deeply held value of the JFS staff team and JFS committee. While the organization offers private pay and sliding scale fees, JFS also accepts several insurance plans that provide coverage for mental health services. JFS currently accepts health plans offered through Medicare, Blue Cross Blue Shield PPO, Humana, United Healthcare, Aetna, Magellan, and Cigna.
Good Faith Estimate Notice
You have the right to receive a ‘Good Faith Estimate’ explaining how much your therapy may cost.
Under the law, health care providers need to give patients who do not have insurance, or who are not using insurance, a cost estimate of the bill for medical items and services.
- You have the right to receive a ‘Good Faith Estimate’ for the total expected cost of any non-emergency items or services. This includes related costs like medical tests, drugs, equipment, and hospital fees.
- Your health care provider must give you a ‘Good Faith Estimate’ in writing for scheduled services within designated timeframes. You can also ask your health care provider for a ‘Good Faith Estimate’ before you schedule an item or service.
- If you receive a bill that is at least $400 more than your ‘Good Faith Estimate’, you can dispute the bill.
- Make sure to save a copy or picture of your Good Faith Estimate.
For questions or more information about your rights to a Good Faith Estimate, visit www.cms.gov/nosurprises.
The volunteer spirit is the backbone of Shalom Austin. Only through the efforts and energy of our volunteers are we able to provide top-notch programs and services to the Austin community. Teens, families, young adults and senior adults— everyone and anyone can and should get involved. Whether once a year or once a week, your help makes a difference.
There are many ways to give back:
Donate to the Shalom Austin Annual Campaign. Lend your time to hands-on volunteering projects. Join a task force or committee. Participate in a leadership program. Attend an event that inspires you.
JEWISH FAMILY SERVICE COMMITTEE
Heather Krol, Chair
Ian Spechler, Immediate Past Chair
Shalom Austin Staff
Rabbi Amy B. Cohen
Shalom Austin Representatives
Rabbi Daniel A. Septimus
It’s Not Too Late to Make Your Gift!
All gifts of any size make a difference.
Please note we are not a 24/7 crisis center. If you have a mental health emergency, please call or text 988 directly or 512-472-4357 [HELP].