JCF chosen to build community endowments

Through a new community-wide partnership, the Jewish Community Foundation of Southern Arizona is leading a program that will help local Jewish agencies and synagogues work together to build endowment funding.

The Foundation is one of five organizations chosen nationally to participate in the new Areivim Legacy Community Project. This enables the Foundation to partner with 10 local organizations and synagogues, which will be selected through an application process and then receive funding, training and support to bolster their endowment-building efforts.

“Our Foundation has built a strong groundwork of legacy gifts over the past 20 years, starting with the Endowment Book of Life, and now we have been given a unique opportunity to ‘kick it up a notch’! We are excited to enter this new chapter in our relationships with our agency and synagogue partners,” says Areivim Co-Chair Brenna Lacey.

“The timing is perfect, as we are now experiencing an intergenerational transfer of wealth that could transform our community’s future,” says Jewish Community Foundation President and Areivim Co-Chair Danny Gasch. “The key will be all of the partners working together, for the good of the greater whole.”

The Areivim Legacy Community Project is modeled after San Diego’s Endowment Leadership Initiative, which has generated an estimated $200 million in bequests and planned giving commitments. San Diego’s Endowment Director Gail Littman serves as national Areivim representative and will be in Tucson to lead the first meeting on Nov. 18.

The Foundation has hired Dana Adler as Areivim project coordinator. Through her extensive volunteer background, Adler is tuned into the dynamics among Tucson’s Jewish organizations. She was president of Temple Emanu-El and has served on the boards of the Jewish Community Foundation, Jewish Family and Children’s Services, Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona, Tucson Jewish Community Center and Israel Center. She chaired the 18th Anniversary of the Endowment Book of Life, Temple Emanu-El’s Centennial Celebration and JFCS’s 60th Anniversary Dinner.

Areivim is funded by a grant from a consortium of major North American Jewish philanthropists who are committed to developing and supporting broad-reaching projects that will significantly impact the next generation of Jews. The Jewish Community Foundation matches these funds, so that each partner will receive $18,000 over two years to implement the program. “The Areivim founders have recognized our Tucson Jewish community’s strengths as well as our potential,” said Lacey. “We are truly honored to have been chosen as one of only five communities nationwide to receive this grant.”

For more information about the Areivim Legacy Community Project, contact Adler at 577-0388 or dana@jcftucson.org.

Nancy Ben-Asher Ozeri is a freelance writer in Tucson.