We did it!

With the community’s support, we embraced
nearly 450 families for the holidays this year.


The gifts are being distributed to families before the holidays. If you would like to contribute we can always use gift cards to Target, Walmart, or grocery stores, and toys for children of all ages. You are welcome to drop these off at our Kearny Mesa location:

Jewish Family Service
Joan & Irwin Jacobs Campus
Turk Family Center
8804 Balboa Avenue, San Diego 92123


Making the Holiday Season a Little Brighter

Each year through our Embrace-a-Family Program, individuals, families, and groups in the community help ensure families in need have a joyous holiday celebration. Many Embrace-a-Family recipients would not have Hanukkah or Christmas celebrations without this program.

How it Works

Embracers are matched with a family in need and provide toys, clothes, food, gift cards, and more for the holiday season. Embracers are provided with a description of the family, including gender and ages of children, and their holiday wish lists. This is a great way for you, your family, group, and/or business to make the holiday season a little brighter for a family who is struggling to make ends meet


Donation Drop-off

Donations will be accepted on Sunday, December 11. Please contact Vanessa Sher at (858) 637-3335 or embrace@jfssd.org to learn more and get directions to drop-off locations in Encinitas and San Diego.

Donate Gifts or Gift Certificates

Even if you can’t embrace a family, you can still participate! Donate new, unused toys, other gifts, and/or gift certificates. Cash donations are also greatly appreciated for last minute gift purchases.

For more information, contact Vanessa Sher, Embrace-a-Family Coordinator, at (858) 637-3335 or embrace@jfssd.org.


Confidentiality and Meeting the Families

JFS strives to give our clients the dignity and confidentiality they deserve. In order to best respect this confidentiality, we do not allow Embracers to meet the family(ies) and will not provide Embracers with names of family members.

We recognize the disconnect this can often cause between children and the families they are embracing. In order to keep the Embrace-a-Family Program meaningful for your children, we recommend going through the wish list(s) you receive upon becoming an embracer. Go through the ages and genders of the family members and ask your children to draw a picture of what the family looks like. This is a good opportunity to teach your children about the Jewish values of tikkun olam and tzedakah, while preserving the dignity of participating families.

Thank you for your support and respecting the privacy of our clients.



Stay Connected with JFS

Please leave this field empty

(858) 637-3042
Send an email>>

(858) 637-3210

(General Information)
(858) 637-3000

Turk Family Center
8804 Balboa Ave.
San Diego, CA  92123

All communication is strictly confidential.

Charity Navigator