The Truth About Giving to Israel

When Israel was just born, when it was a fledgling state, it relied on the financial support of Diaspora communities. Today, Israel has a booming economy. It can, theoretically, "fend for itself." Why, then, should the Diaspora continue to give to Israel? The answers begin with a story. In 2003, three years after immigrating to Israel from the United States, Joseph Gitler founded Leket Israel - The National Food Bank, and Israel's largest food rescue and redistribution organization. His experiences running Leket and in fundraising on its behalf over the past eleven years has given Mr. Gitler unique insights into the Israel-Diaspora philanthropic paradigm - and the need for a shift in that paradigm. As Mr. Gitler's recent ELI talk suggests, it's not just about the money. In the talk, Mr. … [Read more...]

Guiding Donors Through the Philanthropy Loop

Philanthropy Loop

By Rabbi Jay M. Stein Being a fundraiser is kind of like acting as a sherpa; it’s my job to guide people on their philanthropic path. The problems facing the world can seem like insurmountable Everests, but fundraisers can help make those problems much more approachable. We work with people to find opportunities to not just give back, but to do so in a way that’s an expression of their values. … [Read more...]

Protect Your Mission: Offload Non-Core Activities and Share Services

By John Hoover In the 2000’s, social entrepreneurship was well underway at The Andrea and Charles Bronfman Philanthropies (ACBP). Incubated programs including the Heritage Project, Birthright Israel, and the Karev Program for Education Involvement were in full swing, and several new programs were growing including the Green Environment Fund, the Association for Israel’s Decorative Arts, 21/64, Slingshot, and Reboot. For each, the mission was clear. Each developed a board, which each focused on hiring engaged, energetic, passionate, and talented people to staff these new enterprises. Board members, advisors, and staff of ACBP and the projects were excited about sparking something impactful. However, the new social entrepreneurs quickly realized that ‘organizational’ life gets in the way of mission … [Read more...]

Bronfman Fellowships & Amitei Bronfman Alumni Venture Fund distributes $25,000 in Alumni Micro-Grants


The Bronfman Fellowships Alumni VentureFund (AVF) - a peer-to-peer giving fund supported by donations from the Bronfman alumni community - has announced the Winter 2014/2015 Alumni Venture Fund Grantees. The AVF gives grants to innovative, creative, impactful alumni led projects that are in the spirit of the Fellowships’ core values. For the first time this year, both BYFI's American and Israeli alumni governing bodies joined to make all grant decisions based on group deliberation and close discussion with applicants. The AVF has distributed over 200 grants, and Bronfman Fellowships alumni throughout the country and the world are making meaningful change in their communities as a result. This year, our 21 grantees will be: Bringing Yiddish into the 21st century…. Eli Batalion (BYFI ’97) - … [Read more...]

Personalized Philanthropy and the Grail of Fundraising for the Four Donors Within You

The Holy Grail

[We are pleased to introduce this series of six articles as a companion to the book by Steven L Meyers, Personalized Philanthropy: Crash the Fundraising Matrix and Make the Real Shift to Donor-Focused Giving. While that book was written primarily for gift officers and professional advisors, these articles are written to share with donors - hopefully to begin a new conversation about philanthropy with clients/donors who ardently wish to support their most treasured charities. The articles aim to introduce some of the basic concepts of Personalized Philanthropy, a powerful new and tested model for charitable planning which challenges conventional fundraising practices in bridging current and future giving so that donor impact and recognition may begin immediately and scale up over … [Read more...]

Sacred Conversations About Money

Give Better. Give Together. Sacred Conversations About Money A 7-Part Series on Launching and Sustaining a Successful Jewish Giving Circle This article is Part 5 in a series about giving circles. (Read past articles here.) Giving circles, groups who pool donations and decide together which causes to support, are a powerful tool for providing anyone - at any age, in any place, at any giving level - with access to an exciting, intentional giving experience. Giving circle members learn and do something about the issues that mean the most to them within their community of friends, family, fellow program alumni - anyone. As part of our effort to expand and strengthen giving circles in the Jewish community, Amplifier: The Jewish Giving Circle Movement is proud to present this seven-part series to … [Read more...]

From Apps to Advocacy: The Israeli-American Millionaire who Made Israel an Ivory-Tower Brand

photo courtesy FIDF

After succeeding beyond his wildest dreams in America, Israeli-born high-tech maven Benny Shabtai has sold off his family's stake in Viber and is now devoting his energies to garnering support for his homeland and preparing future Jewish leaders. By James Kirchick “America was extremely good to me,” says Benny Shabtai, a wall of windows showcasing the Atlantic Ocean behind him. We are sitting in the living room of his magnificent home on the 25th floor of a luxury condominium complex at the southern tip of Miami’s South Beach. No one could fault the Israeli businessman for invoking the clichéd immigrant adage of appreciation for his adopted country. Earning his initial fortune as the founder of the Raymond Weil luxury watchmaker’s U.S. brand, Shabtai last year sold off his family’s stake in … [Read more...]

Rose Community Foundation Announces Grants from 4th Q. 2014

During the fourth quarter of 2014, Rose Community Foundation awarded 302 grants totaling more than $6.8 million. Of this amount, $3,471,364 was awarded for 57 grants from Rose Community Foundation’s program areas to nonprofit organizations, government agencies and projects that support the health and well-being of the Greater Denver community. Donor-advised funds housed at the Foundation approved 245 grants totaling $3,347,721. Rose Community Foundation has awarded grants totaling more than $225 million since its inception in 1995. Jewish Life grants included: Hillel of Colorado (Denver): $69,760 for consultants to provide strategic and real estate planning, coaching, and an executive search process. Jewish Family Service of Colorado (Denver): $97,500 to hire consultants to provide … [Read more...]