JCF Grants Establish Community Relations Council, Support Arts and Advocacy
The Jewish Community Foundation proudly announces its 2015 discretionary grants, totaling more than $210,000 — including the largest one-time grant in its 43 year history — a $54,000 planning grant for the Board of Rabbis of Greater Phoenix to re-establish a Jewish Community Relations Council in our community.
“When the Board of Rabbis applied to us for funding, we saw it as a natural extension of what was started in 2011 with the Foundation’s Community Conversation,” said Foundation President and Chief Executive Officer Richard Kasper. “The follow-up report for the Community Conversation identified public affairs as a key focus area; one of the recommendations from the final report included launching a project with the following mission:
‘To foster dialogue and understanding within the Jewish and larger metropolitan communities, to amplify the Jewish voice in response to matters of importance to the Jewish people and on issues that inherently cry out for a Jewish response, to facilitate collaborations for good among Jews and between the Jewish community and its neighbors.’”
Through the Board of Rabbis, the JCRC will provide the local Jewish community a platform from which to speak to the community overall in an organized, unified and impactful Jewish voice. The local Council will focus on advocacy, education, and coalition building for public affairs initiatives. This one-year planning grant will allow the Board of Rabbis to hire an employee to oversee development of a JCRC for our community.
“Two other key focus areas that grew out of the Community Conversation –Jewish arts and culture, and leadership development — also helped guide this year’s grant making. The grants for the Arizona Opera and the ASU Center for Jewish Studies each provide an entry point to the Jewish community for people who may not be connected,” said Sheryl Quen, Foundation Director of Grants and Communications.
In terms of leadership development, the Foundation awarded grants totaling $10,000 to Hillel at ASU for its Comprehensive Israel Engagement Initiative, designed to teach advocacy skills to ASU students, to arm them with the necessary tools to face proponents of the BDS movement. The Initiative also includes an advocacy and education program for high school students.
Chaired by attorney Robert Roos, the Foundation’s grants committee awarded 12 grants totaling $213,687.
For more information about our 2015 discretionary grants Continue Reading
Learn More about the history and importance of the JCRC in our community in this editorial featured in the Jewish News.