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National Federation/Agency Alliance The 2015 Partnership
What is the Alliance? The National Federation/Agency Alliance (or the Alliance) is a COALITION of 28 U. S. federations PARTNERING with 9 national Jewish agencies in a project COORDINATED by The Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA)
The Alliance agencies
Where and what we are: American Jewish World Service, Association of Jewish Family & Children’s Agencies, Atlanta, Baltimore, BBYO, Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Detroit, Greater Metro. West NJ, Greenwich, HIAS, Hillel, Jacksonville, JCC Association, Jewish Council for Public Affairs, JTA (70 Faces Media), Long Beach, Louisville, Memphis, Miami, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, NCSEJ, New York, Northeast NY, Northern NJ, Ocean County, Palm Beach, Pittsburgh, Sarasota-Manatee, Southern Arizona, Springfield IL, Tidewater, and Washington, DC
Why your community should join the Alliance! • Is it because the Alliance is a complicated, inside baseball, marvel that no one has heard of? No (and it’s really not that complicated)!
Because your federation cares about … capacity building for local agencies.
Alliance Strategic Direction: STRENGTHEN INSTITUTIONS within the Alliance, Federations, and affiliated agencies as vehicles for serving the Jewish community. • JTA provides lay leaders and professionals (and local Jewish papers and federations) with “need-to-know” coverage and analysis of news developments affecting Jews here, in Israel and around the world. • Though JCC Excellence: Benchmarking, JCC Association proactively works with JCCs to improve their services and operations and create an “early warning system” by tracking organizational health. Benchmarking provides a comprehensive analyses of member engagement, financial performance, client motivation, and staff satisfaction. • Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA) provides one-on-one consultation with JCRC directors, professional development opportunities, leadership development, and priority-setting expertise. • As the Jewish resettlement organization, HIAS will pass through $8. 5 million in federal funding in 2015 to Jewish Family and Children’s agencies to allow those agencies to provide services for refugees.
Because your federation cares about. . . engaging the next generation
Alliance Strategic Direction: support and encourage current and future generations to IDENTIFY WITH JEWISH LIFE and learning and to contribute to society by drawing on Jewish values as a source of inspiration and meaning. • American Jewish World Service (AJWS) puts the fight for global justice on the American Jewish agenda, engaging countless young Jews who want to build a more just and equitable world through global philanthropy, service, disaster relief, education, organizing and advocacy. • International Convention brings together 1800 energized teenage leaders, part of the 45, 000 involved young Jews at BBYO, to participate in service projects, develop leadership skills, and celebrate Shabbat. • Through Resetting the Table, JCPA trains young urban Jews to convene and facilitate open, inclusive, conversations across deep divides on such issues as Israel and gun control.
Alliance Strategic Direction: support and encourage current and FUTURE GENERATIONS to identify with Jewish life and learning and to contribute to society by drawing on Jewish values as a source of inspiration and meaning. • Hillel has deployed over 2, 000 Campus Entrepreneur Interns on more than 80 campuses, connecting 100, 000 previously uninvolved college students to a meaningful Jewish life. • Through the JCC Maccabi Games, JCC Association has brought together more than 130, 000 teens from over 100 communities across North America to participate in a transformative Jewish identity building experience. • JTA’s My. Jewish. Learning. com leverages social media to spread knowledge of the Jewish religion, its history, values, and culture in a format accessible to all Jews.
Because your federation cares about. . . support for Israel!
Alliance Strategic Direction: affirm the vital role of ISRAEL in Jewish life in North America and take an active role on key challenges facing it. • A joint project of JCPA and JFNA, the Israel Action Network has become the federations’ “go-to” resource for communities seeking the latest information, strategies and best practices when it comes to defending and supporting Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state. • National Coalition Supporting Eurasian Jewry (NCSEJ) works actively with the governments of the countries that make up the Former Soviet Union, particularly those nations with significant Muslim populations, to increase, strengthen, and expand their ties with Israel (and support Israel in the United Nations). • Hillel is often the convener of pro-Israel groups on campus. Every day, Hillel professionals, particularly Hillel’s Campus Israel Fellows, help students create meaningful connections to Israel through education, cultural activities and immersive experiences.
Because your federation cares about. . . the vulnerable.
Alliance Strategic Direction: build an American Jewish community that provides quality, accessible and timely SUPPORT FOR HUMAN NEEDS and a safety net for chronically and temporarily vulnerable community members and others. • The Association of Jewish Family and Children’s Agencies (AJFCA) helps local JFS agencies serve Holocaust Survivors better, securing 11 national VISTAs (publicly-funded volunteers) to build capacity for Survivor programs. • JCPA’s Confronting Poverty Initiative engages federations in antipoverty activism. The Food Stamp Challenge brings needed attention to the scourge of hunger. • American Jewish World Service (AJWS) provides millions of dollars of grant funding to empower marginalized people in the developing world and improve communities. • Jewish teens in BBYO’s Stand UP provide more than 100, 000 hours of community service, helping the vulnerable.
Because your federation cares about. . . collective responsibility!
Alliance Strategic Direction: promote COLLECTIVE RESPONSIBILITY among Jews regardless of where they live and advocate in support of Jews and Jewish communities throughout the world. • Through the Lautenberg Amendment, HIAS preserves the rights of Jews and other religious minorities from Iran and the Former Soviet Union to achieve refugee status in the United States. • NCSEJ keeps us informed of every development in Ukraine, emphasizing the war’s impact on the Ukrainian Jewish community. • Since its founding in 1917, JTA has been dedicated to reporting on the fate of Jews and Jewish communities worldwide. • JCC Association’s Torah for the Troops program provides chaplain services and access to Jewish life to 10, 000 American Jews in the military at bases all over the globe.
An Alliance allocation supports these important initiatives! • The Alliance was formed – to support these and hundreds of other programs like them that benefit the federation system and the people we care about. • Currently, more than $4 million is contributed by federations to the Alliance allocation pool, with most provided as general support for the 9 Alliance agencies.
Background on the Alliance • Created in 1989 as the National Funding Councils, originally the Alliance was only in the business to allocate funds. • Emerging from the Great Recession, the Alliance was at a crossroads - its very existence was at stake. • The resources allocated through the Alliance had sharply declined in the prior four years, for reasons only partially attributable to the financial crisis. • Federations were less interested in a structure that exclusively focused on allocations to a group of national agencies that had barely shifted in a generation.
So we redesigned the Alliance and: • Adopted those five Strategic Directions that serve as a guidepost for the Alliance, determining its agenda and partners moving forward. • Reassessed existing agencies and added new agencies. • Provided for a more efficient agency evaluation and allocation process. • Incorporated national planning at a “macro” (multi-agency) level and “micro” (single agency) level. • Utilized outcomes and annual reports when measuring the accomplishments of the Alliance and its constituent agencies.
Reassessment Each national agency member of the Alliance was evaluated based on: • Impact in advancing Alliance Strategic Directions • Relevance of agency’s mission and activities to mission of the federation system • Overall effectiveness
New members of the Alliance American Jewish World Service & BBYO
Macro Planning: A comprehensive approach to addressing the needs of Jewish families with young children • Convened meeting with national agencies (including JCC Association and several of the movements), federations, local education agencies, and foundations; • Began to address: what does family engagement mean in the context of a local community? What does success look like for this initiative? How might we measure success? What tools, skills, and resources are needed? • Next steps will focus on further development of common definition of Jewish family engagement and expanding communities of practice (nationally and among communities) by sharing ideas and research.
Micro Planning: Engaging Jewish Commuter Students in Jewish Life • In partnership with Hillel, Alliance convened local federation and Hillel professionals to determine unique qualities and needs of target population and compile best practices on how to engage and support these students. • Taskforce focused on engagement, leadership development, career opportunities, service learning and immersive programs, social media, Shabbat and holiday observance, Israel, and space/time issues. • Alliance disseminated final report to all Federations recommending ten major improvements and numerous smaller recommendations.
With the demise of JESNA (previously supported through the Alliance) in 2013 but recognizing that Jewish education still requires national focus: Rabbi Simeon bar Yohai taught: This may be compared to the case of men on a ship, one of whom took a drill and began boring a hole beneath his seat. His fellow travelers said to him: “What are you doing? ” He replied to them: “What does that matter to you, am I not boring under my own place? ” They said: “Because the water will come up and flood the ship for us all!” Leviticus Rabbah 4: 6 Alliance initiated an Education Planning Process
Jewish Education Planning Process • Addressed evolving nature of education for federations. • Summarized successes and failures of JESNA. • Conducted more than 80 interviews with federation volunteer and professional leaders, central agency leaders, philanthropists, academics, social innovators and researchers. • Convened national consultation with more than 70 stakeholders. • Surveyed federations.
Lots of possibilities, 7 areas of focus • • Central Agencies Convenings Distribution & Relationships Knowledge Sharing Leadership Cultivation Research and Development Thought Leadership
The decision. . . • To move forward, innovative programmatic ideas, needed to be grounded in some sort of continental hub. • Federation stakeholders concluded JFNA was by far the preferred vehicle for the hub. • Alliance will fund a new JFNA Jewish Education & Engagement Unit for 3 years.
2015 Allocations. Alliance is • Providing core operating support for 9 agencies ($3, 471, 080); • Incubating Jewish Education through the new unit at JFNA ($575, 000); and • Supporting one additional initiative ($100, 000).
$100, 000 to help JTA merge with MYJEWISHLEARNING. COM According to Ami Eden, CEO of the new merged entity (70 Faces Media), “This supplemental support not only sent an important signal to other stakeholders and funders, it also provided us with the resources to ramp up vital aspects of our integration, allowing us to implement more efficient and aggressive efforts to dramatically increase readership and revenues in 2015 and beyond. ”
Other benefits of Alliance membership • Rigorous evaluations of national agencies so you don’t have to do that locally. • Fewer agencies requesting funds from you. • Active engagement with national agencies. • Leadership development opportunities. • Troubleshooting if problems emerge. • Sitting at national planning tables.
QUESTIONS? The Alliance and your federation. . . PERFECT TOGETHER We hope to soon welcome you to this table PLEASE CONTACT: Stephan Kline, Alliance Coordinator (202) 736 -5864 Stephan. [email protected] Federations. org