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Posts tagged ‘Young Adults’

Granting our Future

Recently, YAD Board Members Danna Rubin and Sarah Persitz came up with an interesting idea on how to educate young adults on philanthropy: create a unique event that isn’t focused on collecting money but, rather, on giving it away.

On January 28, more than 30 members of the Federation’s Young Adult Division participated in Granting our Future, an occasion where attendees sat at tables of six, wined, dined and made decisions about which Federation grantee would receive $5,000.

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Request for Proposals: Young Funders Impact Grants Initiative

The Jewish Community Federation and Endowment Fund requests proposals for its new Young Funders Impact Grants Initiative (IGI) focused on innovative ideas and initiatives for engaging adults in their twenties in Jewish life. Read more

Wanted: Applicants for the Haas/Koshland Award for a Year in Israel

If you’re a college student and yearn to travel to Israel, you just might get that trip. Applications are now being accepted for the Haas/Koshland Memorial Award which provides up to $20,000 for a year of study or personal development in Israel.  The award is open to all Jewish college students—sophomore year through graduate school—who are from, or are attending school in, the Greater San Francisco Bay Area.
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Purim Fun for Everyone

Purim is just around the corner and there is no shortage of community events for any age group.  Shake your grogger at one or more of these fun celebrations:

Children, Teens, and Families

Purim Shabbat Celebration: Friday, February 22 at JCCSF
Purim Party at Ashkenaz: Saturday, February 23 at Ashkenaz (Berkeley)
Sensory Friendly Purim Carnival: Sunday, February 24 at Peninsula Temple Beth El
Purim Palooza: Sunday, February 24 at Osher Marin JCC
GIANTS-themed Purim Party: Sunday, February 24 at Grattan Elementary School (San Francisco)

Young Adults

Purim Party, Megillah 3.0 with Killing My Lobster: Saturday, February 23 at Intersection for the Arts (San Francisco)
2013 Peatot Purim Party: Saturday, February 23 at Club Fox (Redwood City)

For information on more upcoming community events, check out the JCF online community calendar.

Love at the Latke Ball

by Chad Aronson

It was December 23, 2010, and I was getting ready to go to the Latke Ball with the two friends I had made since moving to San Francisco two months prior.  I was anxious to meet Jewish women, as I had not been finding much success on JDate.  I was disappointed when they both cancelled on me, and chose to spend the evening with my brother, the only family I had in San Francisco, instead.  However, in a twist of fate, another friend chose to go to the Latke Ball at the last minute! I quickly informed my brother, who then wished me luck on my quest to meet someone special.

Latke Ball 2010

When I arrived at the Latke Ball, I was blown away by the venue and excited about meeting so many new people.  After a few hours, my friend convinced me to accompany her to the bar next door where we could enjoy some free drinks since she knew the bartender.  Initially I went with her, as I was new to the city and didn’t know many other people, but ultimately returned to the Latke Ball to continue my night.

I danced with some new friends for a while, and later retreated to the (much quieter) upstairs bar for a cocktail.  By the time I reached the top of the stairs, I noticed two women sitting together at the bar. I figured I would walk by and see if they would look at me, or show any interest. I happened to catch one of the women looking at me as I did this, so I took the chance and introduced myself.

Within the first thirty seconds, I felt a real connection with Elana.  I can’t really explain why, maybe it was because I was six cocktails deep at the time, but there was something about her smile and the ease of the conversation that made me not want to stop talking with her.

Elana’s path to the Latke Ball that evening had also been complicated and, like me, she only decided to come at the last minute.  It truly felt like fate that we had met.  After dancing the night away, I remember kissing her goodbye and hoping that she had had as great a time as I did as I looked forward to our first date.

Two Years Later

As Latke Ball 2012 and our two year anniversary approached, I was ready to take the next step in my relationship with Elana.  I had already convinced her that we would be spending our anniversary at the Latke Ball, and Emily Whitehead-Coppola, YAD Development Assistant, and her team booked Ruby Skye’s VIP room for us where I surprised her with a proposal.  SHE SAID YES!

We popped some champagne, and she was so excited that she she wanted to call her friends and family right then.  I got her to hold off, and surprised her one more time- before she could even finish the first glass our loved ones appeared in the room to celebrate with us.

Thank you so much to Emily, the rest of the YAD staff, and everyone else who helped make this night possible.  I know I will look back at this night in forty years from now and remember how special the Latke Ball is both to me and Elana.

Announcing the Grantees of the Young Funders IGI

The Jewish Community Federation and Endowment Fund connects people of all ages, backgrounds and perspectives to the power we have as a Jewish community to improve the world.

The Young Funders Impact Grants Initiative (IGI) sought to fund innovative approaches to engaging young adults ages 21-29 in Jewish life.  The eighteen Federation donors and community members making up this committee spent seven months evaluating proposals/conducting site visits and ultimately, selected 6 programs (from an initial pool of 37 exceptional applicants) to fund.

The programs awarded funding represent emerging organizations with strong social entrepreneur leaders at the forefront of engaging young adults through new and innovative efforts:


CST & the JCC of Sonoma County have teamed up to create the Sonoma County 20’s Tribe. This group will provide social experiences, holiday events and Shabbat dinners for 20-somethings in Sonoma and connect these young adults to their Jewish community.

Initiates young adults into the study and understanding of Jewish texts through the fun and important lenses of media literacy and animated filmmaking.  This grant will specifically fund Studio Pastrami, creating the next great G-dcast video on Judaism and food.

Hardly Strictly Torah is a Kevah group for Bay Area Jewish leaders in their twenties that fosters Jewish identity, deepens Jewish knowledge, and creates community for the next generation of Bay Area Jewish leaders.

Vinyasa, Kavanah & Vino is a program that will provide Jewish young adults with opportunities for Jewish yoga, havdallah and holiday services, as well as happy hours.

Provides experiences for young, Jewishly-interested adults through integrated programs that offer opportunities for engagement. This grant enabled them to bring the Six-Word Memoirs project to San Francisco.

Historypin: Memory Lane Project utilizes the tools of youth culture to encourage twenty-something’s to actively connect with, capture, and share the evolving Jewish history of the San Francisco Bay Area.

To learn more about the Young Funders IGI, contact David Katznelson at 415.512.6233 or

This Sunday is Super Sunday!

Your Gift Supports New Ideas to
Strengthen the Jewish Future

Funding high-potential programs and organizations provides a high return on investment, namely, new generations who are engaged in the Jewish community. G-dcast, Moishe House and Kevah are just three examples of how innovative thinking can create more ways for more individuals and families to connect. Whether it’s increasing Jewish literacy through digital storytelling, exploring textual tradition through Torah study groups, or providing meaningful experiences for young adults in their 20s, it’s all about engaging more people in Jewish life. Your gift to the 2013 Annual Campaign makes it possible. That’s the power of community.

Give now to the 2013 Annual Campaign
Answer the call on January 27, 2013
Register to volunteer at Super Sunday

Young Adult Impact Grants Initiative Begins

Lana Volftsun

Lana Volftsun

By Lana Volftsun, Young Adult Impact Grants Initiative Member

This year’s IGI kicked off at the JCF where we had the opportunity to hear from Roger Bennett about the changing young adult Jewish experience in America. We discussed why we give and why we give Jewishly – what does giving Jewishly mean to us? Afterwards, we broke into groups to discuss our values. It was fascinating to see what motivates each IGI member to give and what fuels their passions. Our IGI chairs, Matthew and Jason Goldman facilitated a group discussion on the topic, ultimately unifying the group around shared values ranging from innovation to community to tradition. It was exciting to meet so many new people who also care about doing good Jewishly.

Our second gathering was held over dinner at the home of Doug & Lisa Goldman. I was thrilled that we were joined by Toby Rubin, Founder and CEO of UpStart Bay Area. She educated us about the local and national climate for serving post-college young adults and provided great examples of what has worked locally and nationally. We went around the table and shared our most valuable or engaging recent Jewish experience. Responses ranged from Birthright Israel and other travel opportunities to Mission Minyan or a casual Shabbat with friends. After a delicious dinner, we broke into small groups to discuss how we like to be engaged Jewishly and where we see areas that could be better served in the Bay Area. The warmth of the Goldman’s home and the excitement building around the table made for a really wonderful evening and I can’t wait for the next one! We’re convening again at the end of March to design our Request for Proposals and we may even have a local ‘field trip’ before then.

I’m thrilled to be part of IGI to learn more about myself, my peers, and to positively influence the Bay Area Jewish community. Thank you so much to everyone who made this program possible, I can’t wait to see the impact we make!

Meet Alia, YAD Manager

Alia Gorkin, the Federation’s Young Adult Division Manager, shares with us what YAD is all about. If you are in the Bay Area and between the ages of 21 and 40ish, we would love to see you at our upcoming YAD events.
Go here for more info:​yad

Better than movies and Chinese food on Xmas eve!

Cancel the movie, throw away the Chinese take-out menu…and get to where the party is.  You don’t want to miss this year’s Latke Ball 2009  at Ruby Skye, San Francisco’s premier special event venue.

Get down with more than 1,000 young Jewish adults for the sweetest mega music mixes, dancing, and the hippest crowd.   

Hang out with the A-list and celebrate in style by registering for the VIP Reception. Get exclusive access to the Ruby Skye Balcony where you’ll enjoy dessert, champagne, and a bird’s eye view of the dance floor from 8:30 – 10:00 pm.

Not only is YAD’s Latke Ball the hottest X-mas eve spot in the city, but the club itself is a main attraction.  The turn of the century restored Victorian playhouse has art nouveau architecture and is considered an historical landmark.  It’s been retrofitted with a technologically advanced sound system and plush modern furnishings. 

General admission is $30 in advance, $40 at the door; VIP is $50, $60 at the door. Ben Gurion Society donors pay general admission prices and get VIP access. Register online for advance tickets. Young adults 21+.

Thursday, December 24, 8:30 p.m. – 2:00 a.m. Ruby Skye, 420 Mason Street, San Francisco (map)

Want to check out some of the party-goers at last year’s event? Click here to see the photos!


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