By Nancy B. Greer
President & CEO
What do Seattle Jewish Chorale, Hillel of Western Washington University, Hebrew Free Loan Association of Washington State, and Limmud Seattle all have in common? These organizations each illustrate that on-ramps to Jewish life in the greater Puget Sound region come in all shapes and sizes and they are all past recipients of the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle’s Small Agency Sustainability Grants. These grants provide funding that enables small but mighty organizations to take the next step in serving our community’s cultural, learning, religious, and other needs.
For congregations and agencies that have limited budgets and rely on small staffs or volunteers to accomplish their goals, a helping hand can make a big difference, both in taking care of everyday needs and providing resources for programs that connect people to community. Each year, the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle awards Small Agency Sustainability Grants to eligible organizations – unrestricted funding of up to $5,000 each that provides essential operating support for organizations that have annual operating budgets of $150,000 or less per year.
Applications for fiscal year 2020 Small Agency Sustainability Grants open on Monday, February 3, and I encourage all eligible organizations to send us completed applications by the deadline of Monday, March 6, at 3 pm. Eligible organizations include non-profit Jewish organizations that serve a significant Jewish population in Western Washington. In 2019, 10 congregations and agencies from throughout Western Washington received one of these grants. A link to application materials will go live next Monday on this Federation web page, where you can also see full lists of recent past recipients.
One of the many endowments that the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle manages for the community is the Special Initiatives Fund. Every year, this Fund generates revenue that supports Small Agency Sustainability Grants, as well as Ignition Grants and biennial Women’s Endowment Fund Grants. These programs exemplify the power that endowments have for supporting Jewish life in perpetuity, thanks to generous donors and legacy supporters.
A diverse and growing Jewish community such as ours depends on organizations, large and small, that provide the services essential for meeting our diverse and growing needs. Small Agency Sustainability Grants are one of the many ways that Federation is ensuring Jewish continuity, for today and future generations. We look forward to seeing this year’s round of grant applications.
Not every small organization will be reading this letter – so if you know of one or more, please forward this message! Please help us get the word out. Thank you.