7897787Young Jewish American adults represent 36% of all Jewish American adults; yet only 13% donate to Jewish causes. Only 2% donate to their various federations. You might ask, why is this?

“In their views, the institutionalized Jewish community does not meet their needs or speak to their interests as young people.” [Reboot study 2006].

With the goal of empowering the next generation of sustainable Jewish giving, Wharton grad and former Philadelphia Moishe House leader Shelby Zitelman has launched The Level8 Network. A project of the 2009 class of the PresenTense Institute, Shelby describes her endeavor as “a grassroots philanthropy fund that teaches the tools of effective philanthropy by utilizing the collective resources of young Jewish professionals to support innovative nonprofit organizations.”

The Level8 Network is structured as a membership model in which members contribute money, professional skills and year-long committee participation to geographically based philanthropy funds, each focusing on various areas of need in the Jewish world. Members will actively engage in the process of soliciting, screening, selecting and supporting Jewish organizations. Through such interactions, Level8 members will be empowered with a new culture of giving that will support the Jewish community into the future.

You can learn more information about The Level8 Network, and contact Shelby through their Website.

This is the first of a series of snapshots on some of the ventures to emerge from this summer’s cohort of the PresenTense Institute.

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