The Natan Fund Announces 2013 Grants

natan logoNew York, NY, April 3: The Natan Fund, a philanthropic foundation based in New York City, today announced $842,700 in 41 grants to cutting-edge emerging nonprofit organizations and social entrepreneurs in Jewish communities around the world.

Natan is a giving circle of young philanthropists dedicated to funding Jewish and Israeli nonprofit innovation. Since 2002, Natan has awarded over $8.6 million in grants to 145 emerging Jewish organizations and social entrepreneurs around the world.

The 2013 grants are the result of the organization’s 10th annual round of grantmaking. Through a three-stage vetting process, 51 Natan members sitting on Natan’s 8 grant committees reviewed 307 applications and selected the 41 grantees for their innovative approaches, the strength of their leadership, and their potential for making a substantial impact in their respective focus areas.

“Supporting new ideas is critical to maintaining the vibrancy of the Jewish people and the State of Israel,” said David Steinhardt, chair of Natan’s Board of Trustees. “We’re continually inspired by the striking amount of creativity that talented people are generating each year, especially in new places like Europe, Asia, and Latin America. We’re honored to support these startups and social entrepreneurs, alongside our returning grantees that are continuing to innovate as they expand their reach and impact.”

The new round of grants includes awards made through two new grantmaking partnerships that extend Natan’s reach on both ends of the nonprofit “startup” spectrum. With the addition of the Natan Grants for ROI Entrepreneurs, Natan now has two grant committees dedicated to supporting social entrepreneurs in their earliest stage of idea development. (The other is the Natan/NEXT Grants for Social Entrepreneurs, a partnership created in 2009 with NEXT: A Division of Birthright Israel Foundation.) Natan also just launched a new partnership with Bikkurim’s Atid Hazak (Strong Future) program to support post-startups as they gear up for substantial organizational growth. The first beneficiary of the new program will be longtime Natan grantee Hazon, which Natan and Bikkurim will support with $100,000 in dedicated growth readiness funds and $155,000 in pro bono consulting over the next two years.

Some notable facts about the 2013 Grants:

  • 35 of the 2013 grants are for general operating support, a reflection of Natan’s belief in the necessity of providing unrestricted funding, especially to young organizations.
  • 9 grantees are based in Israel; 2 in Europe; 2 in Latin America; 1 in Asia; and 25 in North America. 9 of the organizations operate programs in more than one country, and 8 grantees exist almost entirely as web-based platforms.
  • 24 of the grants are renewals; 15 are to organizations that are new to Natan.

New 2013 grantees include:

  • Gefiltefest – a young London-based organization using the prism of food to engage young Jews in Jewish culture and community, especially through its popular annual food festival.
  • GrapeVine – a tool that combines data aggregation, targeted marketing, and predictive analytics to enable people to learn about and connect to Jewish events in their community easily and consistently.
  • The Kitchen – a groundbreaking independent spiritual community in San Francisco led by Rabbi Noa Kushner, which experiments with new ways of building Jewish community and spirituality through a unique mix of traditional community events, life-cycle and holiday rituals, and home-based programs.
  • The Sefaria Project – seeking to revolutionize the experience of Jewish textual learning and enhance Jewish literacy and engagement by building a free and universally accessible living library of all Jewish sacred texts via web and mobile platforms.

A full list of the 2013 grantees can be found on Natan’s newly redesigned website: The winner of the inaugural Natan Book Award will be announced shortly.

Note about the 2014-5 Grants:

Natan is shifting its grant year and will begin accepting new Letters of Inquiry in July 2013 for grants to be awarded in July 2014. Check Natan’s website over the summer for details about the 2014-5 grant timeline.