By Sue Schwartzman, Director of Philanthropic Education and Engagement
The upcoming Thanksgiving/Chanukah holidays offer families a unique opportunity to be together and share special moments with extended family and friends. Sometimes being together and sharing a meal and candle blessings is enough, but if you are looking for additional ways to be more connected and add meaning to the holiday, try the table conversation starters, the storytelling gift, or the Night of Giving ritual suggested below. Thanksgivukkah is an opportunistic moment to try something new. Read more
And why do you give to the Federation?
We’re constantly spouting messaging about why it is important to make donations through the Federation, but we were curious to find out what actually compels our donors to do so.
This is what they had say…
So why to you give?
As Passover approaches, the Jewish people are blessed again to recount the signs and wonders that accompanied our people on their journey out of bondage to freedom. Our strength of overcoming obstacles has always been rooted in our ability to take collective action. The Jewish Community Endowment Fund (JCEF) builds on that strength by ensuring that we continue gathering together to tell our story to their children. By creating a generous charitable gift annuity you enact a traditional responsibility to care for yourself, as well as our Jewish community.
This Passover, we hope you will consider connecting the next generation and their families to a vibrant, meaningful Jewish community. Whether that means donating to our 2010 Annual Campaign today or establishing a JCEF charitable gift annuity at current favorable rates to help protect yourself against financial uncertainties, either way, you’ll be playing a part in securing a robust and vital Jewish community for centuries to come.
We’re down to the wire. It’s time for us to determine which programs will receive Federation’s funding for the coming year. As of today, there is a large gap between the dollars needed to sustain the many services that support Jewish life and the dollars available. If we fail to close this gap by June 30, many of our community’s vital programs will be cut at a time when they are needed most.
If you haven’t made your gift to the 2009 Annual Campaign, please take this opportunity to make your pledge by June 30. Your dollars fund critical services for vulnerable members of our community, from babies to seniors, in the Bay Area, in Israel and around the world. Your one gift can drastically change many people’s lives.
If each of us makes a gift, no matter what amount, collectively we have the strength to create change. Please make your pledge today, payable by December 31, 2009. I assure you that every dollar counts and is appreciated.
If you’ve already made your gift, we are truly grateful and hope you’ll consider making an additional pledge or forwarding this email to others urging them to join you in supporting your Federation during this challenging year.
Your gift has never been more important.
Chief Executive Officer
Jewish Community Federation
P.S. Thank you in advance for your gift to the 2009 Annual Campaign.
For more than 25 years, the Jewish Community Federation has focused on programs that reflect the unique values of our San Francisco community. We address needs and relate to target populations that others might not, or who would otherwise fall by the wayside.
We follow our programs closely, making sure they are implemented effectively and efficiently, with a maximum of accountability from our own office in Israel.
One of these program that the San Francisco Federation is funding is Atzmaut (“Independence”) – a comprehensive, family-based program for Ethiopian Jews, which provides intensive mentoring to the entire family, relating to the needs of the children at school, the difficulties of their parents in finding work, and to parent-child relationships and family functioning.
The unique approach of our community is apparent. The Ethiopian-Israeli community in Sderot is only 120 families – small by government standards. Both government and philanthropic funds are overwhelmingly directed to those towns in which there are large concentrations of the Ethiopian community. Often those living in the smaller places fall by the wayside. And of course, in Sderot, only 1Km from the Gaza border, their needs are no less compelling.
A recent missile attack forced Batsheva, Atzmaut’s Program Director in Sderot, (herself Ethiopian-Israeli) to her family’s shelter. She realized she was using breathing techniques from trauma relief workshops she’d arranged for Atzmaut participants. Asked how living under fire had affected her work, she explained, “It is not easy working when you are worrying about your family, but it gives me strength to know that I have to help those who need help more than I do.”
The critical need for this program, clear every day, is all the more highlighted in times of crisis. Additional gifts directed to this program will increase the number of families and children receiving help. Give now.