The National Center to Encourage Judaism (NCEJ) is a small foundation that for over 20 years has focused mainly on offering individual grants to synagogues for outreach and conversion programs. NCEJ’s goal is to encourage Jewish organizations to offer opportunities for non-Jews to learn about Judaism, with the ultimate objective of increasing the number of converts and thus synagogue affiliation.
Over the past decade NCEJ has provided grants to hundreds of Jewish organizations in the US. Most grants range from $500 to $1,000 and generally help offset program advertising and marketing costs for introduction to Judaism courses and similar initiatives.
NCEJ is looking to expand the number of new applicants it funds, as well as the size of the awards, depending on the nature of the program. NCEJ encourages proposals for introductory courses of varying lengths and costs (for example a semester rather than 18 weeks) and drop-in classes to enable more people to “test the waters.” NCEJ is also interested in proposals for innovative, “outside-the-box” programming. These programs must be geared to the community at large, not to a congregation’s members.
Applicants can fill out a one-page form and will then be contacted for more details. There are no set application deadlines. For more information, visit: www.ncejudaism.org.