Wake me up when it's all over. (Yom Kippur 5780)

Far from shore or any other vessel, the people on a small sailboat found themselves surrounded by sharks, just as something pierced a large hole in the hull. Water rushed into the boat, and the passengers sprang into action. Some worked to plug the hole; others grabbed buckets and furiously bailed water; others threw things at the sharks to drive them away.

But one passenger did none of this. Instead, as his shipmates struggled, he donned an eye mask, leaned against a pillow, and fell fast asleep.

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The Women & Girls Index: Measuring Giving To Women's And Girls’ Causes

By Women's Philanthropy Institute 

The Women’s Philanthropy Institute today, October 3, 2019, released the Women & Girls Index: Measuring Giving to Women’s and Girls’ Causes, which, for the first time, quantifies the number of charities in the United States dedicated to women and girls and the
amount of charitable giving they receive.

The report finds these organizations received a collective total of $6.3 billion in charitable contributions from individuals, foundations, and corporations in 2016 — 1.6% of all donations made that year.

The index identifies 45,000 U.S. charities that are dedicated to serving primarily women and girls or are collectives of women and girls that serve general philanthropic purposes. While most previous research has focused on donors to women’s and girls’ causes, the new report focuses on the recipient side of the equation, filling a gap in knowledge about the organizations themselves.

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Gali Cooks: Leadership and People in the Jewish Workforce

Episode 4 of What Gives? The Jewish philanthropy podcast from Jewish Funders Network.

Guest: Gali Cooks, inaugural President & CEO of Leading Edge, the Alliance for Excellence in Jewish Leadership.

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Video—Building Community: A New Agenda For Adult Jewish Learning

When you think about adult Jewish education, what comes to mind? Is it Jewish literacy? Jewish History? The weekly Torah reading? Hebrew? 

While the enterprise of adult Jewish education may provide different things for different people, there is one significant benefit that is generally not considered:  

Rich Jewish learning can actively build community. 

Join Ruth Messinger, former president and CEO of American Jewish World Service and inaugural JTS Finkelstein Institute Social Justice Fellow at the Jewish Theological Seminary, and Rabbi Morey Schwartz, International Director of the Florence Melton School of Adult Jewish Learning, for an interactive discussion on the impact of Jewish adult learning. JFN member Susan Weiss Firestone will introduce the discussion.

The Jewish landscape is changing. Join us to learn about how adult Jewish education can deepen engagement and strengthen the very fabric of our Jewish communities. 

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Video: The Israeli Elections: What Just Happened?

Watch Yohanan Plesner, former Member of Knesset and current president of the non-partisan Israel Democracy Institute (IDI), analyze the September 17 election results in Israel. Plesner explains who won, who lost, and what are the long-term policy implications for Israel and the Jewish People.

Joining Plesner is former Justice Ministry official Edna Harel-Fisher, Director of IDI’s anti-corruption program, who explains the unique legal reality in Israel as the country faces the possibility of a sitting prime minister serving while under indictment, and the implications of such a situation for the political system.

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Video: Redesigning the Jewish Future: A Case Study from Hillel

The future of North American Jewish life is evolving more quickly than ever, and in order to help the Jewish community thrive, funders need to embrace new approaches and perspectives in order to re-position our institutions and initiatives for greater impact.

This webinar shares a high-impact case study piloted with a cohort of Hillels, using quantitative and qualitative data results to show the impact of applying a Design Thinking methodology. With an eye to the future, we can re-imagine how and what we fund and support as community builders.

Speakers:

Karyn Cohen Karyn Cohen, Director, Jewish Life and Israel, One8 Foundation
Yonah Schiller Yonah Schiller, Executive Director of Tulane Hillel, and Founder & Senior Project Advisor of the Organizational Design Lab

 

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Rabbi David Wolpe: Jewish Identity, Authenticity, and Unity

Episode 3 of What Gives? The Jewish philanthropy podcast from Jewish Funders Network.

Guest: Rabbi David Wolpe, renowned writer and speaker and senior rabbi of Sinai Temple in Los Angeles.

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Crucial Donors: How Major Individual Givers Can Best Support Nonprofits

By Ellie Buteau, Hannah Martin, and Charis Loh, The Center for Effective Philanthropy

The biggest source of philanthropic support for nonprofits in the United States is giving from individual donors. Of the $428 billion in total charitable giving in 2018, individual donors contributed 68 percent. However, the recent decline in giving among small- and medium-gift givers means that major donors are becoming increasingly important to nonprofits. The Center for Effective Philanthropy (CEP) surveyed its Grantee Voice panel of more than 600 nonprofit leaders across the country to learn what support nonprofits receive from major donors, what major donors can do to support nonprofits better, and how nonprofits’ relationships with major donors differ from their relationships with staffed foundations.

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Only the Mediocre Can Save the World (Rosh Hashanah 5780)

I’ve seen the creation of the world on live TV.

No, I really have; and you probably have too, many times, without realizing it.

Remember that static black-and-white “snow” on your analog TV in between channels? Well, part of that static is something called Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB), which is nothing but the light created by the Big Bang explosion that is still bouncing around in space. Visually alluring it’s not—rather close to watching paint dry—but it’s kind of cool that today, with your own eyes, you can directly see the beginning of the world.

But you can also see its end.

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Ilia Salita: Russian-Speaking Jews and World Jewry

Episode 2 of What Gives? The Jewish philanthropy podcast from Jewish Funders Network.

Guest: Ilia Salita, President and CEO of Genesis Philanthropy Group

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