Jewish Giving: Is the Glass Half-Full?

Gary Rosenblatt writing in The Jewish Week:

Younger Leaders Seen Less Bound By Traditional Ties
Study presented at Jewish Funders Network finds little consensus on establishment values.

… The lively plenary was part of a three-day conference sponsored by the Jewish Funders Network, viewed as a yearly “summit” on Jewish philanthropy. About 250 people, representing more than 150 different philanthropists and foundations, from the well-known to the little-known, came together to meet, network, discuss possible collaboration and reflect on trends in giving.

Gone was the deep sense of gloom that hung like a pall over last year’s conference. Indeed, there was relatively little mention of the economic crisis or Madoff scandal of a year ago, and the consensus seemed to be that the financial, and philanthropic, situation is steadily improving, at least for those who attended the conference at the classy Arizona Biltmore Resort.

According to a report on an instantaneous survey taken on Sunday, the majority of funders present: are 40 to 60 years of age; live on the East Coast (46 percent); give between $100,000 and $500,000 in charity annually (11 percent give $10 million or more and 14 percent give $20 million or more); are somewhat optimistic that Jews will be better off in 2020; feel that literacy initiatives are insufficiently funded (68 percent); think that funding for Holocaust remembrance is sufficiently funded (52 percent); believe that Israel advocacy is under-funded (55 percent) and plan to increase their funding next year.