S.F. Federation Announces more than $1.1M in new Endowment Fund Grants to Community Partners

San Francisco, CA – The Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin and Sonoma Counties (the Federation) is pleased to announce that, last week, its board of directors formally approved $1,127,835 in new grants dispersed over five years through its Endowment Fund to outstanding community partners actively engaged in building and deepening Jewish community.

“We’re thrilled to support eight game-changing programs designed to inspire Jewish life and build Jewish community here in the Bay Area,” said Danny Grossman, CEO of the Federation. “These grants are part of the Federation’s vision of a strong, vibrant, and welcoming Jewish community that speaks to the needs of Bay Area Jews. We’re proud to partner with each of these organizations as we engage, connect, and grow community together.”

Applications are now being accepted for the Endowment Fund’s next round of seed-funding.

The new grants include:

$250,000 to Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC), Counter BDS Campaign
A renewal grant to expand work across diverse Bay Area communities to counter efforts to de-legitimize Israel through the BDS (Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions) campaign, helping to shift public opinion toward investing in peace rather than divesting from Israel.

$250,000 set-aside for five years for the Federation’s Teen Engagement Initiative
Seed funding to help launch an ambitious new Teen Engagement Initiative – a key component of Federation Forward – a community-wide partnership to strengthen the entire ecosystem of Jewish teen programming in our local community. 

$150,000 over three years to The Kitchen, Earned Income Capacity
Seed funding to build The Kitchen’s capacity for several promising earned income streams that will help the organization extend its reach and strengthen its financial model. The Kitchen is a startup religious community in San Francisco that serves diverse young people, interfaith families, and unaffiliated Jews. Its earned income strategies include the recently launched Hello Mazel Jewish holiday subscription box, which raised over $150,000 for 1,400 subscriptions through a nation-wide Kickstarter campaign.

$114,000 over three years to JCC Maccabi Sports Camp, Israel Through Baseball
Seed funding for Maccabi Sports Camp, a new Jewish overnight camp, held at Menlo College, exploring the link between baseball’s rising popularity in Israel and the campers’ connection to Jewish culture and Israel. The grant will fund Israeli baseball coaches to serve as “shlichim” (Israeli ambassadors) to provide Israel programming and help build relationships with Israel.

$100,000 over two years to Camp Tawonga, B’nai Mitzvah Program
Seed funding for Camp Tawonga’s new B’nai Mitzvah Program, a two-year alternative experiential learning program culminating in b’nai mitzvah ceremonies. The pilot program, for those who are not members of synagogues, is now fully enrolled at 48 families, with waiting lists for cohorts in San Francisco, the South Peninsula, and the East Bay. This funding will help the program double in size with a new class next year.

$90,000 over three years to JIMENA, Experiential Learning Program
Seed funding for JIMENA (Jews Indigenous to the Middle East and North Africa) to create an experiential curriculum on multi-cultural Jewish heritage (with a focus on Sephardi and Mizrahi culture and legacy), to be incorporated into local day schools and other educational programs.

$90,000 over two years to Honeymoon Israel, Bay Area Cohorts
Seed funding for Honeymoon Israel (HMI) for local recruitment and programming to support six Bay Area cohorts participating in HMI’s immersive trips to Israel intended to engage young couples in Jewish life. Local programming is conducted in partnership with The Kitchen, and includes Jewish life concierge services, retreats, study groups, innovative holiday celebrations and participant-led programming to create communities of couples committed to exploring Judaism and raising Jewish families.

$53,835 to the Jewish Film Institute, Talk Amongst Yourselves: JFI On Demand
Seed funding to launch a local community dialogue program around JFI’s new video-on-demand platform. JFI’s on-demand film library will eventually carry all the films ever shown at the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival (over 1,600 titles). This project builds on partnerships with other Bay Area Jewish agencies to promote events and community-wide conversations around four Jewish films a year, using tools like book group and study group models and online platforms to discuss Jewish themes and content.

The Jewish Community Federation and Endowment Fund connects people of all ages, backgrounds, and perspectives to the power of the Jewish community to improve the world. We partner with donors, organizations, and foundations to address pressing issues facing our community, and develop innovative strategies that result in deep and lasting impact locally, in Israel, and around the world. Learn more at www.jewishfed.org.

For immediate release

June 02, 2016