The challenge – and the enemy

At a parlor meeting in Westfield the other day, we had a great conversation about all the different amazing and inspiring agencies that Federation supports. Several dozen local agencies, dozens of national and international agencies. Dozens of synagogue programs. Thousands and thousands and thousands of people’s lives enriched, saved, improved because of our – your – work.

On the one hand... there are a lot of wonderful, inspiring, and committed Jewish communal supporters out there. On the other hand... our world is very small and very inter-connected. So we, as servants of the Jewish community, often find ourselves all talking to the same finite and small group of people.

So how do we address this? I think that philanthropy, especially major gifts philanthropy, is cumulative, not exclusive. In other words, I don’t know many Federation supporters who give only to Jewish Federation. They give because they care, because they have found organizations that share and implement their values... and those values are wide-ranging enough to include more than one cause. If you give to one of our local agencies, to a great Israeli charity, to your synagogue, or to a program that speaks to your passion about being Jewish, I think you’d probably have the values and vision to support what we’re doing at Federation as well.

The challenge – the “enemy” – in what we do isn’t the other organizations vying for support. The challenge is the whole concept of “non-giving.”

Those who don’t get it, who don’t support their synagogue or other great organizations, probably won’t give to us either. And we all lose because of that.

If you care, you’ll get it. And you’ll keep getting it.

Click here to see the many ways your support of Federation improves lives.


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