Interest-free loans available for special needs, disabilities


Kol ha’kavod on the coverage in the Feb. 3 edition about Jewish Disability Awareness & Inclusion Month. There are many great local and international resources that help foster inclusion, including Jewish Free Loan.

JFL offers loans for families and individuals who are in need of interest-free loans to pay for medical costs, housing, long-term care and more through the Special Needs/Disability Assistance Loan Fund. These funds have been able to help Jewish families in our local community in order to enable individuals and families the opportunity to improve their lives.

Anyone in need of JFL’s assistance should apply online at or call (602) 230-7983.

Jennifer Starrett, Jewish Free Loan board member

Full-day kindergarten is key investment for state’s future


Education is the great equalizer. As the daughter of a poor immigrant and a public school teacher, I am a living example of the opportunity that comes with a quality public school education. That education started for me with Mrs. Whatley in kindergarten,­ where I spent a good amount of time learning to read using the “Dick and Jane” books.

More than a mere introduction to school, Mrs. Whatley’s kindergarten classroom set me on a path to a lifelong love of learning. Reading was my gateway.

I am now proud to raise three school-aged children in a state where Gov. Doug Ducey’s budget recognizes the need to expand full-day kindergarten for Arizona’s neediest students. As a former preschool board member, I have witnessed the importance of early childhood development to future success. A positive relationship between full-day kindergarten, third-grade reading ability and high school graduation rates is undeniable.

If we are truly committed to education as the great equalizer, we need to support the governor’s effort toward higher literacy rates and further expansion of full-day kindergarten. Preparing Arizona’s youngest students for success today, guarantees a brighter tomorrow for us all.

State Rep. Maria Syms (R-28)

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