The Jewish Federation of Somerset, Hunterdon & Warren Counties
2014/2015 Annual Report to the Community
Message from the President & Executive Director This has been a busy and exciting year for us. Our Executive Director of 15 years, Diane Naar, retired in September. Her service to our community was exemplary, and we were fortunate to have her steering our ship for so many successful years. Although we are sad to see her go, we are both personally pleased that the Federation Board asked Robin to try to fill Diane’s shoes. It is a daunting task. The Federation does so much good work in so many areas. We’d like to take a moment here to highlight a few of the new initiatives we have begun. Our Women’s Philanthropy Division gained a new co-chair. Laura Boretz joined Alissa Fox in championing the cause of caring for the homeless here at home in Somerset, Hunterdon and Warren counties, as well as in Tel Aviv. Together with the Women’s Committee they have raised significant funds that will make a difference in many lives. We held the inaugural event of our newly formed Men’s Group. The event included displays of fine watches, hand-rolled cigars and whisky tasting. The men, and a few women, really enjoyed the evening, and we raised quite a bit of money for our Annual Campaign. The Business Networking Group has been reinvigorated, and is back on a regular schedule of events. Under the guidance of the co -chairs Ken Kaplan and Michael Lehner, the attendance has grown and the events are very valuable to the businesses and professionals who attend. We launched the Blank Leadership Development Program to train the future leaders of our Jewish community. The first cohort of Blank Leadership Fellows has been selected. They will be attending educational sessions and going on a mission to Israel. Once they have completed the training we are confident they will all reach their full potential in service to tzedakah and tikkun olam. Our devotion to those who find themselves in emergency situations was proven time and again this past year. We have run special campaigns for Operation Protective Edge during the summer of 2014 war in Israel. We have run two emergency campaigns for the Jewish community in Ukraine, which continues to suffer terribly as a result of the situation there. We also responded to the overwhelming need in Nepal following the two major earthquakes in the spring of 2015. With all of the new things that have been taking place in The Jewish Federation of Somerset, Hunterdon & Warren Counties, one thing does not change. The support and devotion of the community. It is because of the generosity of our donors that the world is changing for the better. Each donation has a direct and significant impact on the lives of those in need here at home, in Israel and in over 70 countries around the world. As we like to say Federation does 3 things. We care. We build. We save. We create a caring and kind Jewish community that has a ripple effect on the world around us. We build Jewish life, learning and leadership. And we save the world one person at a time every day. We look forward to working with the entire community in pursuit of this mission,
Steve Lieberman President
Robin J. Wishnie Executive Director
The Jewish Federation of Somerset, Hunterdon & Warren Counties Mission Statement The Jewish Federation of Somerset, Hunterdon & Warren Counties is the umbrella organization of the areaâ€™s Jewish community, bringing together agencies, organizations, and communities to support and fulfill the needs of the Jewish people. The Federation raises funds to coordinate services, and helps support agencies that touch the lives of Jews in Somerset, Hunterdon and Warren Counties, in Israel and around the world. Statement of Nonprofit Status: The Jewish Federation of Somerset, Hunterdon & Warren Counties is a nondenominational 501c3 nonprofit offering services to individuals locally and around the world, without regard to faith. All services are open and accessible to the entire community.
2014/2015 IN PICTURES Holocaust Survivors educate students at the Raritan Valley Community College Institute for Holocaust & Genocide Studies Learning Through Experience Program
Tastings and Timepieces
Cerminara Architect (Hillsborough, NJ) sponsored a Federation Business Networking Event in February 2014. Over 40 community businesses were represented at this BNG
Imagine 2014 supported homeless children and families locally and in Israel
Deputy Consul General of Israel in New York Amir Sagie speaks to participants at the Federation Solidarity Rally
Your Jewish Federation supports partners and agencies in our local community, in Israel and around the world, caring for people in need, and nurturing and sustaining the Jewish community today and for future generations.
This year… Through our partnership with The Jewish Federations of North America, The Jewish Agency for Israel, The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, and World ORT, we have:
Operation Protective Edge:
We provided, food, toys and games for use in bomb shelters. We had volunteers on the
ground helping the elderly and disabled get into those shelters. We sent families to summer camps outside the range of the rockets for a much needed respite from the fear and tension, and continue to provide counseling to those suffering from PTSD as a result of the rocket attacks.
Crisis in Ukraine: We continue to provide food, clothing, medicine and companionship to the elderly shut-in Jews of Ukraine. Many of them are Holocaust Survivors who are unable to leave their homes. Our American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) staff visits with each of them at least once a week to make sure they are safe, fed and are taking their medication. The staff carries bags of groceries, household supplies and medicines and then stays for a while to spend some time brightening up the day. We also continue to assist Ukrainian Jews who want to make Aliyah in getting the visas they need from Ukraine and arranging for their arrival in Israel through the Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI).
France: After the murder of innocent civilians at the Jewish grocery store in Paris, the Federation system sent our experienced professional security advisors to consult on increasing and modernizing security procedures and apparatus all over France. With the rising tide of anti-Semitism in France and beyond, security concerns are growing. Timely solutions are imperative.
Nepal: In the wake of the earthquake in Nepal, the Federation system through JDC, has sent over supplies of food and medicine, as well as experts in the field of emergency management and first responders to help reduce the human toll.
Israel: In addition to all of the work we do on an ongoing basis in Israel, like creating smart classrooms through ORT, and aiding new immigrants through the Jewish Agency, our Women’s Philanthropy Division has purchased much needed furniture and other supplies for the Gagon Homeless Shelters in Tel Aviv, as well as making it possible for disabled children in the Negev to receive much needed services. Our support for Birthright and the Gesher program for high school students is a cornerstone of our ongoing relationship with Israel.
We will continue to devote ourselves to the Jewish community the world over –
THANKS to YOU!
Our Women’s Philanthropy Division raised thousands of dollars to assist homeless children and families in our local area at Interfaith Hospitality Network of Somerset County, Family Promise of Hunterdon County, Family Promise of Warren County, and Gagon in Israel. We organized two successful fundraising events, our widely attended Imagine event in the fall, and Recipes Remembered in the spring. Our Business Networking Group organized successful networking events to help connect our local business community. The 1st annual Men’s Group event, Tastings and Timepieces, was a huge success, bringing together a varied group of participants in support of our mission. In our local community, we supported the fabric of Jewish life by:
funding Jewish adult education programming through Jewish LIFE. providing the community with our print and online Jewish community newsletter, The Speaker, and frequent eblasts. funding educational programming and bus subsidies for the Institute of Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Raritan Valley Community College. funding, in concert with the Shimon and Sara Birnbaum Jewish Community Center, PJ Library, a children’s book program for local Jewish families. funding a community bus for local residents to attend the Celebrate Israel Parade in New York City. funding a wide range of programs at Jewish Family Service of Somerset, Hunterdon & Warren Counties. assisting individuals with information and referral for health and human services. working with area agencies to collect and provide donated food and goods. organizing our largest community outreach day of the year, Super Sunday, raising thousands of dollars and bringing together community members from across our tri-county area for a day of tzedakah and tikkun olam. continuing for a 9th successful cycle our dollar-for-dollar community challenge grant for new and increased gifts, Kehilat Achat.
Financials How Funds Are Raised and Allocated (Preliminary Report)
Together we do extraordinary things. The Jewish community is an integral part of our lives and itsâ€™ ability to thrive depends on our successful efforts working together to repair the lives of those in need locally, in Israel and around the world. Together we work to bring to life our shared values of tzedakah (generosity and compassion) and tikkun olam (repairing the world). The Jewish Federation brings together our local agencies, with our worldwide partners, to support Jews wherever they live and to provide whatever they need to maintain basic life essentials and sustain the future of our community. Specifically, through your generosity, shelter is given, meals are provided, and medicine is delivered. Together, we make the difference. We work to strengthen our Jewish community by caring for people in need, connecting unaffiliated Jews, supporting Jewish life and learning and assisting individuals with human service needs.
Special thanks to all our donors, volunteers, committee members and leadership who help us each and every day to meet our Federation mission. Your generosity and dedication make our efforts a reality, locally, in Israel and throughout the world.
Our Worldwide Partners The Jewish Federations of North America The Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) represents 157 Jewish Federations and 400 independent Jewish communities. The Federation movement, collectively among the top 10 charities on the continent, protects and enhances the well-being of Jews worldwide through the values of tikkun olam (repairing the world), tzedakah (charity and social justice) and torah (Jewish learning).
Jewish Agency for Israel The Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI) serves as the link between Jewish people and Israel working to ensure the future of a connected, committed, global Jewish people with a strong Israel at its center. JAFI has helped create and build the State and brought over 3 million Jews to Israel by: facilitating Aliyah, supporting Birthright Israel, engaging young Jews from Israel and around the world in social activism; reconnecting Jews from the Former Soviet Union to their Jewish roots; rescuing Jews and serving as first responder to crises in Israel and around the Jewish world.
The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee Active today in more than 70 countries, The Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) and its partners work to rescue Jewish lives at risk, bring relief to Jews in need, renew lost bonds to Jewish identity and culture, and help Israel overcome the social challenges of its most vulnerable citizens, both Jewish and nonJewish.
World ORT World ORT is the worldâ€™s largest Jewish education and vocational training non-governmental organization. This year, through their network of schools, colleges, training centers, and programs in Israel, Russia, Argentina and many other countries worldwide. World ORT will benefit more than 200,000 people-young and old, Jewish and non-Jewish.
The Jewish Federation of Somerset, Hunterdon & Warren Counties is the umbrella organization of the areaâ€™s Jewish community, bringing together agencies, organizations, and communities to support and fulfill the needs of the Jewish people.
The Federation raises funds to coordinate services, and helps support agencies that touch the lives of Jews in Somerset, Hunterdon, and Warren Counties, in Israel, and throughout the world. BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Steven B. Lieberman, President Kalman Barson George Blank Mark Chazin Elaine Dunst Alissa Fox Leonard Knauer
Sandra Krawitz Eric Lavitsky Pamela Nemeth Arthur Roswell Michael Saul Bob Taber Edward Tolman Gerald Weissman
Financial Services Manager
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