2018-01-31 / Voice at the Shore

Get ready to enter the Impact Zone

Campaign Co- chairs Jewish Federation of Atlantic & Cape May Counties

One of the new features of our annual campaign this year was the introduction of the Impact Zone, a new giving opportunity many took advantage of in 2017, for which we are very grateful.

How does one enter the Impact Zone? If you renewed your gift in 2017 after an absence of a year or more, made one for the first time, or increased your gift from what you gave in 2016, then you are automatically in the Impact Zone.

What does admission mean? Every donor in the Impact Zone will help decide how the funds raised will be distributed, and to whom. Each Jewish organization, including synagogues, in our community will be invited to submit microgrant applications for program funding from the Impact Zone. Donors to the initiative are encouraged to suggest programs for funding, and these programs can be those of local, national, or international Jewish organizations that donors are passionate about and would like to fund.

How will this happen? Applications from local organizations and nominations from Impact Zone donors are due March 30, 2018, and will be assembled into funding centers to be voted upon by donors at a breakfast event on Sunday, April 15, 2018. Each donor to the Impact Zone will receive a summary of every program for which funding is sought, and it is you, the donors, who will decide where and to whom your funds will go. The programs most popular with donors will be funded.

It won’t be as easy as it seems, firstly because the pool of funds for distribution is limited to what was donated to the initiative, and, finally, because we anticipate receiving many more submissions than can be funded.

Despite limited funds, we are excited at the prospect of engaging our Impact Zone donors in making the funding decisions for these funds. It is a new and exciting opportunity for donor involvement, and one we hope will grow in future campaigns. Our world is changing, as are its needs, and, as your campaign chairs, we are grateful for the opportunity to hear what is important to you, and thrilled to give you a greater voice in the funding process your gifts to the annual campaign make possible. This is a new direction for Jewish Federation, but one that signals just how much we are willing to listen – and adapt to changing times.

If you are an Impact Zone donor, you will receive an invitation to participate, and, in the meantime, we ask you to consider the special programs you would like to see funded, and to let us know what they are. You have until March 30, 2018, to do so.

Donors who would like a nomination form and organizations that would like a microgrant application — or if you have questions on the program or your participation — please contact your executive director, Kirk Wisemayer, at (609) 822- 4404 or kirk@jewishbytheshore.org. s

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