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Million Dollar Grant Program Announced | 09-Oct-2013

Effort aimed at Strengthening New Haven Jewish Community

The past five years has been a period of extended economic challenge globally, and many New Haven Jewish institutions are experiencing crisis or distress.  In response to this context of crisis, the Jewish Foundation with the collaboration of the Jewish Federation, has offered an extraordinary program to existing local Jewish organizations to provide funds to enable them to restructure and adapt, or to address their most urgent needs.  The aim is to help the most distressed organizations to survive, and to prevent the less distressed organizations from suffering greater or structural damage or loss.

The program is a $1,000,000 grants initiative. The initiative will enable local Jewish agencies, organizations and synagogues to apply for grants matching, dollar for dollar, funds they raise for capital improvement as well as innovative community initiatives.

 Don Hendel, President of the Jewish Federation, commented on the announcement.  “We are aware our community is shrinking, plus average age of membership is among the oldest in the country.  We need to attract new members and retain existing members.  I am pleased the boards of directors of the Federation and Foundation overwhelmingly approved the program. I believe it will energize and grow our entire community.”

A grants committee consisting of members from both the Foundation and Federation will administer this program. “Under their guidance I am confident this program will help build our community and make it attractive to new, as well as to existing members.” Hendel further stated.

The program is an investment in the future for all Jewish people and organizations throughout the New Haven area. It will go a long way to sustain existing services for young and old. "We are excited to receive proposals that have high potential to stimulate fundraising and help implement innovative projects that will benefit the community," Said Dena Schulman-Green, Grants committee member.

The Jewish Federation and Foundation of greater New Haven have on-going efforts in place to monitor, examine and improve their community outreach. As Foundation chairperson, and longtime board member, Jeffrey Hoos put it, “We are in the business of helping Jewish people and organizations in New Haven. And by help I mean finding ways to build and nourish Jewish life in every way. This grant process is a perfect example of how the Federation and community can work together to attain that goal.”

The matching grant monies are made possible thanks to the unrestricted funds of the Jewish Foundation.   The grants will be awarded in two tranches, one the fall of 2013 and one in the spring of 2014. 

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