In Defense of Endowments and Legacy Giving


Responding to an op-ed in the Chronicle of Philanthropy earlier this week in which Professor Lila Corwin Berman sharply criticized the Jewish Future Pledge (co-founded by JFN members Mike Leven and Amy Holtz), JFN President and CEO Andrés Spokoiny published a piece on the critical role legacy giving and endowments play. In addition to praising the Jewish Future Pledge, his piece also noted the accomplishments of the Harold Grinspoon Foundation's Life & Legacy program.

Read the full piece in the Chronicle of Philanthropy.

Download a PDF of the article.

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Ilana Kaufman: Listening to Jews of Color

Episode 17 of What Gives? the Jewish philanthropy podcast from Jewish Funders Network.

Ilana Kaufman, executive director of the Jews of Color Initiative, and host Andrés Spokoiny discuss the Black Lives Matter movement, how Covid is impacting Jews of color, and how the Jewish community can do a better job of including and serving Jews of color. 

 

 

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Launching a New Tradition for JFN West

With the West Coast doubly battered from both Covid and wildfires this year, the role of philanthropists there is more critical than ever -- so it was energizing and inspiring this week to bring together more than 110 funders for our first-ever JFN West regional conference, called “When The Smoke Clears."

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Lighting a Path into the Future (Hanukkah 5781)

Sorry to break it to you, but Hanukkah is not that unique.

Almost every culture has a midwinter holiday in which light is the main protagonist. From the Norse Yule, to Christmas, to Diwali. It seems that, as the days shorten and the sun retreats, the fear of darkness inscribed in the human DNA takes over.

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Israeli Philanthropy Turns a Page

For decades, the donor-advised fund, known by the acronym DAF, has become an increasingly popular and powerful force way for Americans to donate money. This philanthropic tool has played a critical role in sustaining American Jewish life, and most Federations or associated Jewish communal foundations sponsor a DAF program.

Now, for the first time ever, this giving vehicle is available to Israelis and to foundations making grants in Israel — and I expect it bring more money, and more donors, into Israel’s vital nonprofit sector. In Hebrew, the word “daf” means page, so as Jewish Funders Network and our partners introduce DAFs to Israel, I like to think that we are helping the country turn the page and open a new chapter in philanthropy. 

Read the full article in the Times of Israel.

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JFN Brings Donor-Advised Funds to Israel

JFN-Israel is making history.

For the first time ever, Israeli philanthropists – and overseas funders operating in Israel - can open donor-advised funds, enabling them to set aside money for future charitable giving without having to start a private foundation.

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The Covid Content Revolution

"Overwhelmed as we are with the threat that Covid presents to our institutions, we tend to forget a quiet revolution that is taking place during the pandemic: the democratization of quality."

 

Read article on eJewish Philanthropy

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Mazel Tov to Israeli Astronaut Eytan Stibbe

It is with great pride and excitement that we learned the news of JFN member Eytan Stibbe being named the second Israeli to travel to the International Space Station. Eytan will be traveling on behalf of the Ramon Foundation in partnership with the State of Israel. You can learn more about the mission here.

 

 

 

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Covid Was Not a Crash Diet

Anybody who, like me, has ever tried to lose weight – and failed – has experienced some of the harsh realities of dieting. At the beginning, you get really encouraged, take decisive action, and see the results right away. The pounds seem to fall off, and those old jeans suddenly fit again.

But then progress slugs. You plateau and, little by little, you start gaining weight again. Well, you tell yourself, after that run I earned that cookie, didn’t I? You fail to realize the two key truths about dieting: that certain practices, like exercise, portion control, and no-snacking, need to become a way of life, and that every stage requires different actions. The exercise routine that helped you lose your first five pounds may not be effective for the next 10. And your carbs strategy needs to be different: You can totally cut them for two weeks, but can you sustain that over time?

 

Read full article — a Message for the National Day of Philanthropy — in eJewish Philanthropy.

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Rabbi Shai Held: The Spiritual Transformation After the Plague

Episode 16 of What Gives? the Jewish philanthropy podcast from Jewish Funders Network.

Guest: Rabbi Shai Held, President, Dean, and Chair in Jewish Thought at Hadar.

 

Watch a video of this conversation here.

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