WEEKLY UPDATE 8.29.19 – JEWISH NATIONAL FUND
Dear JNF Campaign Leaders:
With four weeks remaining in our 2019 annual campaign, we are moving closer to our annual campaign goal. We need to raise $5 million by September 30. Please help me make it happen. I need all our lay leaders to help make phone calls to reach donors who have not yet made their annual commitment. Can I count on you?
CAMPAIGN PLANNING SUMMIT
As you know, the annual Campaign Planning Summit will take place on the Monday of the National Conference in Washington D.C. Click here to review the agenda for the day. I want to remind everyone that as part of the Campaign Summit, there is an open meeting of the Board of Trustees. All in attendance can see JNF national leadership at work. Two key items on the agenda for the Trustees is approval of the 2020 budget and the approval of the slate of officers for 2020. In addition, Ron Nehring, Director of International Training for the Leadership Institute will run a session to help us all become better spokespeople for JNF. It will be an informative day and provide our leaders with tools to enhance our advocacy for JNF-USA. If you have not already registered for the Campaign Summit and plan to be at the National Conference, e-mail Amy Fass at [email protected].
2020 NATIONAL CONFERENCE IN ISRAEL
Yes, plans are underway for the 2020 National Conference that will take place in Israel next October 25 – 29.
There is a significant savings if you register before September 16.
Click on this link to learn more: jnf.org/nc2020
LAY LEADER TRAINING SEMINAR
There is one more Lay Leader Training Seminar scheduled for this campaign year. On September 25, there will be a session on JNF Marketing and Social Media.
As we look toward 2020, we are planning for the next round of training seminars and would appreciate your input. Please e‑mail Rick Krosnick at [email protected] to let us know what subjects you want us to focus on for next year. What do you want to learn that will improve your understanding of Jewish National Fund and what skills would you like to enhance to make you a more effective leader?
Our Summer Blitz program is underway, and I am pleased we have lay leaders scheduled to visit 39 different communities. Summer Blitz is our final quarterly campaign effort and is designed to raise funds by lay leaders soliciting new gifts and closing gifts of donors who have not yet made their donation to this year’s campaign. Members of our Makor team and national Campaign Cabinet have been assigned to communities for one or two days for 1:1 meetings, parlor meetings and other fundraising opportunities that are organized by our local lay leaders and professional staff. Local lay leadership support is critical in setting up productive meetings. This is also a wonderful time to follow up with prospects who have attended JNF events or who have recently travelled to Israel. Make introductions to people you know in other regions and introduce to JNF professionals your contacts whom you might not feel comfortable soliciting.
We are excited to announce the launch of Be Inscribed, the JNF project to write Torah scrolls on Masada. As part of JNF’s product line, everyone has the opportunity to inscribe a letter, word, verse and so on - even the entire Torah. Click on this link to see a great promotional video and to learn more. https://beinscribed.org/
Travel & Tours
JNF In Your Area
Traveling to another city and want to see what JNF events are taking place there? Just visit jnf.org/inyourarea for a quick look at how to stay engaged while on the road.
Shop Amazon Smile
Did you know that you can support Jewish National Fund while you shop? Amazon Smile will donate a portion of your purchase price to us when you shop through smile.amazon.com.
Today, we welcomed to campus our Barrack group and Fall Semester group. After long flights to Israel, we gathered in the Beit Knesset for a shechecheynu to kick off the new school year. Students will be spending the week getting to know our staff, teachers, madrichim, and campus. We wish all of them be'hatzlacha in their AMHSI-JNF journeys!
Summer may be winding down, but that doesn’t mean that the fun is! This month, Jewish National Fund affiliate Society for Preservation of Israel Heritage Sites hosted special activities for the whole family at 8 different heritage sites around the country. From the HaReut Museum in the Upper Galilee to the Minkov Citrus Orchard Museum and Ayalon Institute in Rehovot to Yellin House outside of Jerusalem, visitors were invited for special activities every Tuesday during the month. Activities included special evening guided tours, art workshops, games, riddles and more! Mikveh Israel in Holon is even hosting special wine-making workshops with a grape juice option for kids. Heritage Tuesdays are a great way to bring more visitors, especially young families, to the heritage sites to teach them about Israel’s pathway to independence.
Most Jewish homes had the famous Jewish National Fund blue box for the deposit of tzedakah coins for charity; it was the method of donation the Jewish State was built on. From early childhood, Jewish children learned their responsibility was to care for other Jews in need. Though the methods are now more complex, the motivation for tzedakah endures through the centuries: to sustain the Jewish people, to enhance Jewish life, and to strengthen the Jewish community for today and the future.
Tzedakah. The Hebrew word for charity, for giving aid, assistance and money to the poor and needy, and to worthwhile causes. It is the responsibility to give a portion of one's personal substance for the common good. But it is more than giving money to the poor. Done properly, tzedakah requires the donor to share his or her compassion and empathy along with the money. Judaism teaches the belief that donors benefit from tzedakah as much as, or more than, the recipients.
In this week’s Torah portion, Re’eh, we find the mitzvah of aser te’aser, literally translated as “tithe you shall tithe,” referring to the obligation to set aside a tenth of our earnings for charity. Since the word for “tithing,” aser, has the same root as “wealthy,” ashir, the Talmud interprets this verse as, “Tithe in order that you shall become wealthy.”
Since we left the oppression of ancient Egypt, the Jewish people have been obsessed with the act of charity. When, in the fourth century, the Roman Emperor Julian ordered the setting up of hostels for transients in every city, he referred to the example of the Jews "in whose midst no stranger goes uncared for." Historical records from every era show that everywhere Jews gave to those less fortunate and created charitable organizations to provide for these people—free loan funds, soup kitchens, wedding funds, widow funds, orphan care, new mother care, free education and much more. There wasn't a Jew who wasn't either giving or getting—and often both.
During daily prayer services, a pushke (or charity box) is commonly passed as part of the service, meaning prayer and charity go together. And it's not just you—a pushke elevates your living space as well. "A charity box in a home or office," the Lubavitcher Rebbe taught, "redefines the entire space. It is no longer just a home, just an office. It is a center of kindness and caring."
Tzedakah is not limited to gifts of money. Sharing time, expertise, or even a kind smile are all forms of charity that we can do.
No matter how much you were blessed with, you can always share with others.