New Partnership Generates More Than $1 Million for Outreach
to Intermarried and Unaffiliated Jews in North America
Thanks to a matching grant program recently announced
by the newly-constituted Jewish Connection Partnership
[JCP], more than $1 million will be spent during the next
12 months on innovative programs to help secure the Jewish
future of intermarried families and unaffiliated Jews.
Members of the JCP include many of the most prominent
names in Jewish philanthropy: The Jacob and Hilda Blaustein
Foundation, The Andrea and Charles Bronfman Philanthropies,
The Samuel Bronfman Foundation, The Nathan Cummings
Foundation, The Hoffberger Family Fund, The Joseph Meyerhoff
Fund, The Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation
and The Jewish Community Endowment Fund of San Francisco.
The Jewish Outreach Institute [JOI], headquartered in
New York, serves as the managing partner of this new
The JCP received ninety-nine requests seeking more
than $3 million in funding, a bold testimonial to the
level of importance outreach has reached in the Jewish
communal agenda. After carefully reviewing each submission,
the Partnership funded 14 projects; each of the projects
demonstrated an innovative approach to fostering the
inclusion of the unaffiliated and intermarried in Jewish
life. In addition, Partnership funds were allocated
for the evaluation of outreach programs.
"Our foundation is pleased to be one of the partners
in the JCP, a collaborative effort by key philanthropists
in the Jewish community to provide leadership in the
field of Jewish outreach and to offer intermarried and
unaffiliated Jews new opportunities to explore their
Judaism," said Charles Schusterman, President of the
Schusterman Family Foundation and a long-time sponsor
of Jewish outreach initiatives.
Among the programs to be funded by the JCP are efforts
to link geographically isolated Jews with nearby Jewish
institutions; to provide opportunities for community
social action [homeless assistance, AIDS awareness]
in a Jewish learning context; to provide Jewish holiday
experiences such as Sukkah- building, Purim costume
designing and story-telling in shopping malls and public
libraries. These projects all attempt to extend the
reach of the Jewish community beyond the traditional
boundaries of existing institutions, thereby making
an important contribution to Jewish continuity and growth.
They will also, help intermarried families better understand
how Judaism can enrich their lives.
The reach of JCP's funding efforts is international
in scope, fostering new outreach initiatives throughout
"It is our hope that this new funding program will not
only increase the involvement in Jewish life of currently
unaffiliated and intermarried Jews, but will also provide
us and all the beneficiaries of our grants with much needed
insight into what constitutes the most effective means
of reaching the very large and growing population of people
whose Jewish futures are in limbo," says Rabbi Rachel
Cowan, director of Jewish programming at the Nathan Cummings
Foundation and one of the principal architects of the
- Two Canadian projects were funded: one in Montreal
and another in Toronto;
- In the heartland of the United States, programs
were funded in Denver, Detroit, Lincoln, NB, and St.
- On the West Coast, programs were funded in Seattle,
Portland, and San Francisco;
- On the East Coast, JCP funded programs in Baltimore,
Boston, Philadelphia, New York City and Long Island.
complete list of the programs