Baltimore, MD - Feb. 6, 2019  - Something remarkable happened in a quaint and charming Jewish bookstore on Reisterstown Road. 

The Sefarim Nook’s newest employee, Nissin Katz, greeted me at the door. His smile was radiant - as it always is - as he explained to me that it was his first day at his new job. His very first job. 

Through an experimental trial and pilot program by Chai Lifeline, the ChaiEmpowerment & Opportunities (CEO) Initiative, Chai Lifeline coordinated and arranged with the Sefarim Nook to secure Nissin a job where he could feel confident and valued. Tzvi Haber - the Director of Chai Lifeline’s Mid-Atlantic Region - offered his insight into the potential for this new initiative.

“Chai Lifeline’s services meet the unique emotional, social, and financial needs of families living through serious pediatric illness or loss The CEO initiative will one day focus on the next steps of the journey. A program that will position itself at the crossroads where pediatric illness ends and adulthood - and independence - begins. It is more than just a transitions program… it will one day be a springboard to the future.”

The initiative is the brainchild of Yehuda Tanen, a senior at Talmudical Academy of Baltimore and a passionate Chai Lifeline volunteer for over two years. Yehuda predicted the growing need for Chai Lifeline children as they themselves grow older, crafting the CEO Initiative as a possible solution.

The ChaiEmpowerment & Opportunities (CEO) Initiative is currently in beta-mode, with a target debut on the national level to be announced in the coming months. If you are interested in learning more about the program, or to become a potential partner with Chai Lifeline in ensuring the successful rollout of the CEO Initiative, please contact Chai Lifeline at

Be sure to come visit Nissin at the Sefarim Nook on Sundays, and ask about the “Nis-Count Discount!”