From Our Blog

The Performance Imperative and the Evolution of Relational Philanthropy

By Chip Edelsberg on May 3rd, 2016

As I move through my eleventh and final year as executive director at the Jim Joseph Foundation, I find it helpful to reflect on key grantmaking principles that inform how I work with Foundation Board members and professionals to help to shape the Foundation’s philanthropy. From the Foundation’s inception, Directors asked the professional team to collaborate with grantees and evaluation experts to carefully assess grants awarded. The Board believes the Foundation’s major grants (generally, awards of one million dollars or more over multiple years) should incorporate “right-sized” evaluation that produces valuable learning for the grantee, the Foundation, and the field of Jewish education. Many developments and changes have occurred in Jewish education, the Jewish community at-large, and in the social profit sector ...More

Technical Assistance: Critical Support that Can Trigger Success

By Chip Edelsberg on August 14th, 2013

The Jim Joseph Foundation has developed a relational approach to its philanthropy that often includes funding of technical assistance for its grantees. Technical assistance, by definition, involves specialized expertise. It is designed to help organizations achieve key goals deemed to be integral to their future success, which expert assistance increases the likelihood they will attain. Jim Joseph Foundation grantees seek support for a variety of functions. Among these are:

  • Communications and Marketing;
  • Cooperation with other ‘501c3’s;
  • Fundraising;
  • Management Information Systems;
  • Planning – business, organizational, and strategic.
The Foundation has developed multi-year relationships with many of its grantees. We have found that funding specific initiatives and programs often lead to requests for support for related organizational efforts. As an initiative or program progresses – and perhaps new ...More

Leveraging a Budget to Build a Foundation-Grantee Partnership

By Steven Green on May 31st, 2013

In many ways, a grantmaking relationship begins with a shared understanding of a budget. This is not to say that grant financials supersede programmatic goals; rather, they are essentially complementary: A comprehensive financial report accompanied by a detailed budget narrative sets a roadmap for an organization’s programmatic priorities. When a funder and grantee come together for budget reviews, it is an opportunity for them to explore how grantee management of the grant award can support efficient implementation of the grant. They can think smarter about how to achieve their shared goals. Conversations about timing of grant payments and reporting on grant implementation, for the Jim Joseph Foundation, are part of a relational funder-grantee dynamic[1]. Four key factors, all related ...More

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.