MASA Has Money to Burn

We know we enjoy a pretty nice number of JAFI, UJC and Federation professionals as readers. This story is just for you. Compliments of MASA; paid for by you.

n626172468_1553As we posted yesterday, MASA has launched “a scare-tactic campaign that urges Israelis to combat assimilation in North America by working to prevent the “loss” of their own Jewish acquaintances there. The 10-day Hebrew-language campaign, to be shown on television and online, was prepared by a leading advertising firm at the behest of MASA…”

Now comes word from Haviv Rettig Gur, writing in The Jerusalem Post, that this little campaign is costing MASA $800,000!

And just look at who MASA says they are trying to reach:

“…the polished high-profile campaign is aimed as much at Israeli decision-makers as at the public. If Masa can lower the participant’s share of the program cost – that is, if Masa can get much more funds from its contributing bodies, the Prime Minister’s Office and the Jewish Agency – “it would double and triple participation in the blink of an eye,” noted Alon Friedman, Shilo-Tamir’s deputy and the director of Masa’s Israel operations.”

I wonder if those who fund MASA pay attention to how MASA spends money. Last Fall, they printed thousands of fancy catalogs for distribution at the GA. A quick examination of the exhibit area [the last day] indicated most were headed to the landfill. Now this.

As an aside, the campaign is certainly receiving a great deal of attention in the social media world.

from The Jerusalem Post:

Masa urges Israelis: Get your Diaspora relatives to come here

Do you have a college-age Jewish relative or friend in the United States? If so, an $800,000 public relations blitz launched by the Masa Project wants you to convince them to come on one of its five-month to yearlong programs.

The campaign targets Israelis through television spots and Internet ads, calling on them to “take responsibility for Diaspora assimilation,” in the words of Masa CEO Ayelet Shilo-Tamir.

and this new article from Haaretz:

Campaign against assimilation of Diaspora Jews gets mixed reaction

… many callers also blasted the campaign – which describes assimilation as a “strategic national threat.”…some calling the campaign a “farce.”