September 17, 2014


Efforts support Jewish legacy giving, social justice and heart health

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The Foundation for the Charlotte Jewish Community will celebrate the third night of Hanukkah in a big way tonight thanks to a $180,000 gift from the Harold Grinspoon Foundation's Life and Legacy Program to support its new Create Your Jewish Legacy (CJL) initiative.

CJL is a comprehensive program designed to promote planned giving among Jewish individuals and families to support local Jewish organizations, says Nancy Kipnis, project coordinator.  Ten partner agencies are participating, including Temple Beth El, Temple Israel, the Hebrew Cemetery and Jewish Community Center of Charlotte, to develop and implement their own legacy giving programs.

Charlotte's model is based on a very successful legacy giving program at the Jewish Community Foundation in San Diego, Kipnis adds. Gail Littman, a consultant who helped create the San Diego effort and has worked with many similar programs nationwide, is in Charlotte today to lead a training workshop and meet with partner agencies.

Philanthropy directed at supporting Jewish communities has attracted considerable attention in recent weeks. Last month, the Slingshot Guide: A Resource for Jewish Innovation, released its list of the 50 most innovative Jewish groups in North America.  Now in its eighth edition, Slingshot aims to define shifting trends in North America's Jewish community and foster opportunities for giving.

Eight members of the newly organized Jewish Social Justice Roundtable, a 26-organization network that seeks to elevate social justice to the center of Jewish life, were recognized by Slingshot for work done domestically, in Israel and in communities in need abroad. The organizations address such diverse missions as home foreclosure prevention; summer urban immersion to strengthen Jewish identity; making the Jewish community more inclusive of LGBT Jews; and an organization of rabbis from all streams of Judaism dedicated to respect and protect the human rights of all people.

Women's health is the focus of philanthropist Irene Pollin, widow of Washington Wizards and Capitals owner Abe Pollin and founder of the heart health organization Sister to Sister. In collaboration with Hadassah, the largest Jewish women's group in the world, Pollin recently gave $10 million to establish a new heart disease prevention program at Israel's Hadassah Medical Organization in honor of her daughter, Linda Joy Pollin, who died of heart disease at the age of 16.

The partnership also will raise heart disease awareness through screening programs and education initiatives across the United States.

 

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