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Wednesday, August 16, 2017

The Hadassah Foundation at Amplifier's Summer Convening

Earlier this month, the Hadassah Foundation attending a program sponsored by Amplifier, an organization that helps "giving circles"--groups of people who pool their money to make joint philanthropic gifts--work more effectively.  Many nonprofits are creating giving circles as a way to better engage donors, and representatives of giving circles from across the United States (and some from overseas!) came to the gathering.

Although the Foundation is not a giving circle, some of the benefits of participating in a giving circle, e.g. donors feel more knowledgeable about their philanthropy, feel like they are part of something larger than themselves, and their pooled money enables them to make larger gifts, also applies to the work of the dedicated volunteers who sit on our Board.

Some of the Foundation's close philanthropic "allies," such as the Jewish Women's Fund of San Francisco and the Jewish Women's Foundation of the Greater Palm Beaches, also came to the gathering, as did representatives from one of the Foundation's newest grantees, Challah for Hunger.  Above, Amanda Winer (left) and Rachel Hirsch (middle), members of Challah for Hunger's Young Funders Committee, learned about ways to strengthen that organization's giving circles for young alum.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Hadassah Foundation Invests $165,000 in Leadership Development for Jewish Teens and Young Women

The Hadassah Foundation, which invests in social change to empower girls and women in Israel and the United States, is excited to announce it has given $165,000 in grants to seven organizations that strengthen the leadership skills and capabilities of Jewish girls and young women in the United States.

The Foundation is a philanthropic pioneer in the fields of improving economic security for low-income Israeli women and developing leadership and self-esteem programs for adolescent Jewish girls and young women in the United States. Since 2000, approximately $7.8 million has been awarded to more than 90 nonprofit organizations.

With this latest round of grants, the Foundation has awarded a total of $500,000 to Israeli and American groups in 2017.

This latest round of grants to organizations in the United States is part of the Foundation's multi-year initiative—inaugurated in 2014—to strengthen leadership development opportunities for young Jewish women in the United States.

Four of the 2017 grantees are receiving a renewal grant for their program, and three are first-time grantees.

"I am so proud of our efforts to boost the leadership skills and abilities of young Jewish women and girls," said Julie Morris, chair of the Hadassah Foundation.

Grants were awarded to the following organizations:

Challah for Hunger, $23,000, New Grantee

Challah for Hunger, is a volunteer-driven social justice project that engages 7,000 students, the vast majority of whom are female, on 82 college campuses across the country.  Student volunteers bake and sell challah on their campuses, and donate funds to anti-hunger programs. They are receiving a grant for a mentoring program that will connect female college students with professional women who share their interests and for its annual conference for students and alumni.

Jewish Community Center of Chicago, $20,000  

The JCC's Seed6l3 program is a social change fellowship for teenage girls ages 14-16.  Through seminars, and regular meetings with coaches, mentors and peers, the girls will be equipped with entrepreneurial tools and knowledge to develop a socially responsible venture that will impact the Jewish community.

Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago, $22,000

The JUF received funds for a cohort of Jewish teen girls to participate in the Research Training Internship (RTI), a program that generates new knowledge about the lives and experiences of Jewish teen girls; empowers girls to develop their own capacity to engage critically with social issues that impact them through an explicitly feminist lens; and positions girls as experts on their own lives and issues impacting them. 

Jewish Women's Archive, $30,000

The Rising Voices Fellowship teaches Jewish female teens in grades 10-12 how to communicate effectively about their experiences, beliefs, and challenges, and use the power of social media to spark a wider conversation about Jewish identity and gender equality among their peers and within the larger Jewish community.

jGirls Magazine, $25,000, New Grantee

jGirls Magazine is an online community and magazine with a national reach written by and for Jewish girls ages 13-19 from all denominations. They work most intensively with 12 teenage girls, who form their editorial board and who review and edit the nonfiction, fiction, poetry, humor, music, and photography entries they receive from girls across the country; all the work is done online.

Lookstein Virtual Jewish Academy at Bar-Ilan University, $20,000

LVJA, an online school for Jewish Studies established in 2014, received a grant to design and pilot an online course for high school girls that fuses classical Jewish text study with leadership skill building.  The course will be taught to cohorts of 20 high school girls enrolled in Jewish supplementary, day, or home schools.

St. Louis Jewish Community Center/Nishmah, $25,000 New Grantee

Nishmah–a program of the St. Louis Jewish Community Center–inspires, engages, and supports Jewish women and girls in the St. Louis area.  They received funds to develop an expanded, Jewishly-infused, formalized leadership curriculum for its Banot (Girls) Board, which serves 12-15 high school girls; the girls, in turn, create programming for elementary-school age girls. 

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

New On-line Magazine for Jewish Girls and Teens

One of the Hadassah Foundation's newest grantees is jGirls Magazine, a totally on-line magazine by and for Jewish girls and teens.  After a long planning period, the magazine is finally live! Check it out here.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Meet Our 2017 Tannenbaum Prize Winner!

The Hadassah Foundation has awarded the 2017 Bernice S. Tannenbaum Prize to Stephanie Goldfarb, program director for youth philanthropy and leadership at the Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago.


The Bernice S. Tannenbaum Prize recognizes emerging professionals who have made innovative contributions to advance the status of women and girls in Israel and the United States. Awardees demonstrate a high degree of talent, commitment, and accomplishment in their work. The prize honors Bernice S. Tannenbaum, z''l, for her lifetime of service to the Jewish People; the State of Israel; and Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America.


Goldfarb, pictured above, was awarded the prize for her work with the JUF's programs for Chicago-area youth. During her seven years at the JUF, she has expanded a philanthropy program for Jewish teens that awards more than $50,000 annually to local nonprofits, and brought an innovative feminist-research training internship program for Jewish girls to the Chicago region. That latter program, the Research Training Internship program, has received funding from the Hadassah Foundation. 

"As the newest Bernice S. Tannenbaum Prize winner, I not only feel a sense of unity with the women who recognized my commitment to social change for Jewish women and girls, I also feel as though I have an army of forward-thinking sisters behind me, pushing me to continue growing personally and professionally," said Goldfarb.

"Stephanie Goldfarb is a talented, charismatic, educator, filled with talent and passion," said Julie Morris, chair of the Foundation. "Bernice Tannenbaum would be so proud of the Foundation's selection."

The Prize provides $500 in general operating support to the JUF, as well as $2,500 to further Goldfarb's professional development.


In addition to her work for the JUF, Goldfarb serves as a resource to other community organizations serving teens. She has run "philanthropy boot camps" at summer camps and for BBYO programs serving Jewish youth, "taste of philanthropy" programs at congregations, and provided trainings for other Jewish professionals about philanthropy, LGBTQ issues, and experiential Jewish education.  She has also run programs on Jewish cooking, which takes advantage of her experience as an award-winning chef who has appeared on multiple Food Network shows.


Goldfarb received her bachelor's degree from Arizona State University in Women's and Gender Studies, with a Certificate in LGBT Studies, earned two masters degrees from Loyola University Chicago (in Clinical Social Work and Gender Studies), and a  Certificate in Experiential Jewish Education from Yeshiva University.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

2017 #Slingshot Fund Guide Highlights our Grantees!

Congratulations to eight current and former Hadassah Foundation grantees who were included in the 2017 edition of the Slingshot Fund guide:

Challah for Hunger

Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance


Lookstein Virtual Jewish Academy

Mayyim Hayyim Living Waters

Yeshivat Maharat

Shalom Bayit

Moving Traditions

The Guide highlights the most innovative organizations in the Jewish community.  This year, in addition to producing a national guide, they created guides highlighting innovation in the Los Angeles and Bay Area.
The full Guide can be downloaded here.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Grantee Profile: The JCC Chicago's Project Teen-Seed 613 Program--Encouraging Social Entrepreneurship

The Hadassah Foundation supports the JCC Chicago's Project Teen--Seed 613, a social-entrepreneurship program for Jewish teen girls.  The JCC Chicago had a successful track record running a social-entrepreneurship program for adults, and with the help of the Foundation, adopted the program to the needs of teen girls. Working in small groups, the girls developed projects that have a social benefit, which were formally unveiled at an event--Launch Night--open to the community at large.  Spencer Rule, above right, along with other teens in the program on Launch Night, describes how this program has impacted her.

My name is Spencer Rule and I was recently a member of the pilot cohort of Project Teen-Seed613, a new, teen social entrepreneurship program of JCC Chicago, grant funded by The Hadassah Foundation. I was born and raised in Chicago, and am currently a senior at Lane Tech High School in Chicago. This fall, I will be attending Babson College in Massachusetts, the number one school for entrepreneurship.

I was introduced to Project Teen-Seed613 by the club sponsor of Jewish Student Connection, Julie Minor. In October, I was accepted into the program and began attending monthly seminars in January. I immediately had a connection with the eleven other girls in the cohort. The program was split into three groups based upon interests. I chose the group that focused on "women's initiatives,"  and worked  alongside three other girls. One of the most enjoyable moments in the program was finally deciding on the product we wanted to create. We had been sitting around a table in the JCC, bouncing ideas off each other, when we had an epiphany. Our group came up with a product called You Flow G12L, a monthly subscription box to empower young women and stop the stigma against periods. The box would include tampons, pads, an educational component about how to live a healthy life, and a small gift. For every box bought, another box would be donated to women and teenagers who do not have access to the feminine care products they need. I enjoyed the program so much because I was able to collaborate with other girls with shared interests in business and entrepreneurship and that really inspired me. I had never been a part of something like that and it was truly incredible.

The cohort acted as a platform for me to really experience social entrepreneurship for the first time. In creating our product, I was able to learn about different business design theories, how to research the feasibility of a business, how to market for a business, and so much more. Most importantly, I was able to create the foundations of a potential business while simultaneously making lifelong friendships. It was incredibly fun but also a lot of work. I expected there to be a lot of work, but at the same time I learned about so many things that entrepreneurs must do that I never realized existed or were so important.

My group and I pitched our idea at a Launch Night on May 23rd at the JCC surrounded by friends, family, and community members. I am still impressed by how feasible and real this program is; we even received a business card from one of the community members who attended the event who was interested in our idea. I am so thankful for this experience because I think it was a vital component of my path to becoming an entrepreneur. I am so excited to be able to use this experience as a starting point for my time at Babson and as a future entrepreneur. My time in Project Teen-Seed613 has given me a lot of new confidence and knowledge about entrepreneurship that I would never have had otherwise.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Hadassah Foundation Now Accepting Proposals for Programs that Empower Israeli Women

The Hadassah Foundation has just announced its RFP for Israeli organizations working to empower low-income Israeli women. We are interested in social change, gender-sensitive projects that help low-income women of all backgrounds in Israel achieve economic independence. Grants of up to $25,000 will be awarded. The Foundation is particularly interested in programs that provide cutting-edge approaches to solve problems that have not been addressed previously.

Areas of interest include:
• Savings, Asset Development, and Pension Planning
• Grassroots Programs that provide resources and training
• Legal and Policy Advocacy Initiatives
• Business Development Services that help women who own businesses improve their outreach and marketing
• Workplace Discrimination
• Leadership development initiatives that increase the number of, and capacity of, women in positions of leadership.

All applications are due by 11:59 AM (ET) Thursday, July 27th.
For more information: