Philanthropy In a Time of Uncertainty

from an opinion piece in The Jerusalem Post by Shimon Arbel, Director of Public Affairs and Resource Development, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology:

The new economic reality will also undoubtedly move donors to be more focused in their philanthropy, supporting only those institutions and charities that can demonstrate added value to Israeli society as well as provide full accountability.

There is concern that the economic downturn will move some overseas donors to cut back on their giving to Israel and focus more on local community institutions at home. In this respect, Israeli institutions must emphasize that we live in one Jewish world with responsibility one for the other. So while it is important that local institutions thrive and are strongly supported, it is equally important and in the best strategic interests of world Jewry that Israel’s institutions also remain strong and vital.

The new situation will also require Israeli institutions to develop an even stronger local donor base and fundraising presence. Studies demonstrate that Israelis are increasingly generous in both giving of money and volunteer time, and the Israeli economy appears to be in a relatively strong position to weather the current economic storm.