Press Releases

March 24th, 2014

Grant Awards from Jim Joseph Foundation Total More Than $300 Million

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – The San Francisco-based Jim Joseph Foundation today announced that grant awards from recent Board meetings bring its total grantmaking since 2006 to $303,950,338. The Foundation focuses on creating effective and compelling Jewish learning experiences for youth and young adults (primarily ages 13-30) in the United States.

“We are incredibly privileged to work closely with grantees committed to innovative and effective Jewish learning and engagement,” says Al Levitt, President of the Board of Directors of the Jim Joseph Foundation.  “Certainly reaching this grant amount is a milestone, but its true significance lies within the number of youth and young adults whose Jewish journeys have been shaped as a result of these efforts.”

The recent grants (from Board meetings in December 2013 and February 2014) in particular show the Foundation’s desire to learn from evaluations, to adapt successful pilot models for other communities, and to help organizations transition to sustainability.  A grant to Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP) of Greater Boston was the first grant as part of the Foundation’s national funder collaborative on community-wide Jewish teen identity building—a project that resulted from the Foundation’s report on Jewish teen education and engagement.

The latest grants detailed below, totaling $7,769,357, continue to focus on the Foundation’s strategic grantmaking priorities: 1) Increase the Number and Quality of Jewish Educators; 2) Expand Effective Jewish Learning for Youth and Young Adults; and 3) Build a Strong Field of Jewish Education.

Adds Levitt, “We will continue to learn from our past work and find the best possible partners to help create vibrant Jewish life and learning opportunities.”

Major Grants from December 2013 and February 2014

Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP) of Greater Boston, Inc.
Up to $1,396,857 over four years (2014-2018) to be matched on a dollar for dollar basis

  • A community-based Jewish teen education and engagement initiative serving the greater Boston Community.
  • The grant is the first-ever as part of the Foundation’s funder collaborative on new community-wide teen initiatives on Jewish identity building, which is a follow-up effort from its report on Effective Strategies for Education and Engaging Jewish Teens

Repair the World
Up to $3,000,000 over three years (2014-2016)

  • Support to launch Repair the World Communities, a fellowship program in four pilot cities
  • Support for the expansion and deepening of Repair Networks, which provides technical support, tools, and resources to bring Jewish values into service, along with referrals and opportunities for young Jewish adults to experience a range of Jewish service-learning.

Israel Institute
Up to $1,420,000 over three years (2014-2017)

  • To expand and enrich Israel Studies opportunities for young Jews on college campuses around the United States
  • The grant will support four areas: 1) a junior faculty seeding grant at SUNY Binghamton; 2) a college summer internship program; 3) and Israel Studies faculty growth grant; and 4) an online course program

Brandeis University Summer Institute for Israel Studies (SIIS)
Up to $150,000 over one year (2014-2015) to Brandeis University’s Schusterman Center for Israel Studies for the SIIS—an institute to train college professionals—to develop and teach courses in Israel studies at their campuses

Jewish Student Connection (JSC)
Up to $497,500 over one year (2014-2015)

  • Support for JSC's regional operations in Westchester (NY)/Connecticut and South Florida
  • To support JSC's national efforts to support the local regions and to prepare to expand to new locations

American Friends of the Israel Museum
Up to $250,000 over two years (2014-2016) for up to 50,000 Birthright participants to participate in educational tours at the Israel Museum

Reboot, Inc.
Up to $750,000 over one year (2014) to provide general operating and capacity building support

Expedited Grants from December 2013 and February 2014

Jewish Jumpstart
Up to $250,000 over 18 months (2013-2015) to support the Sefaria Project to continue to build its technology for an open source, digitized, multilingual, interactive platform of the written history and laws of the Jewish people

Moving Traditions
Up to $55,000 over one year (2013-2014) to support an evaluation of the program, Rosh Hodesh: It's a Girl Thing!

Jewish Community Federation (JCF) of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin and Sonoma Counties: JCF-NEXT Birthright Experience Pilot
Up to $167,935 over three years (2013-2016)

  • A unique pilot collaboration between the Jewish Community Federation and NEXT: A Division of Birthright Israel Foundation
  • Designed to maximize the Birthright experience through pre- and post-trip Jewish engagement and community building programming centered on Birthright alumni and their peers in the greater Bay Area and neighboring California regions

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The Jim Joseph Foundation invests in promising Jewish education grant initiatives. We partner with effective organizations that seek to inspire young people to discover the joy of living vibrant Jewish lives.