UJA-Federation of New York’s Scarsdale Women spent the morning with psychosexual therapist Dr. Ruth Westheimer, a trailblazer who made frank talk about sexuality acceptable. The event took place on Tuesday, October 10, 2017 at Westchester Reform Temple in Scarsdale.
Dr. Westheimer pioneered open and honest dialogue about sexual matters on the radio with her program, Sexually Speaking. Launching in 1980, the show featured Dr. Ruth, as she became known, answering call-in questions from listeners. It became part of a communications network to distribute her expertise that has included television, books, newspapers, games, home video, computer software, and online media.
“Dr. Ruth’s efforts to normalize straight talk led to greater acceptance, and UJA embraces that value deeply, both in words and in action,” said Rochelle Waldman, who chaired the event with Elizabeth Brucker, Liza Levy, and Leslie Perelman, all of Scarsdale.
“Not only do we work tirelessly to find a place for everyone within our community, but we support programs that provide a safe space for conversations that once were taboo,” Waldman continued. “That’s why we fund programs that support digital platforms where teens can talk about mental health challenges and find services, opportunities to create community around those struggling with infertility, support for LGBTQ youth and adults, and so much more. By allowing for open dialogue, we, too, advance acceptance and create a caring community, one where everyone has a voice.”
Funds raised at the event go to UJA-Federation, which supports a network of more than 80 core partners and hundreds of other nonprofit organizations, large and small. These nonprofits provide food for the hungry, shelter for the homeless, independence for the elderly, jobs for the unemployed, as well as stimulating education programs for people in New York, in Israel, and in nearly 70 countries.