Check Out this Unique Experience for Teens!
The Jewish Teen Foundation of Greater Boston (JTFGB) offers teens the opportunity to make a profound impact on their community through building and running a grant-making foundation. As they learn about the grant-making process, students will raise the money through direct solicitations, determine the issues they would like to support and make donations to the causes they care about. The program arc includes consensus building, creating mission statements, researching relevant nonprofits of interest, RFPs, grant proposals and applications, site visits, allocating funds to the organizations of choice, while learning about philanthropy through a Jewish lens.
This past year, 49 Jewish teens came together from 23 different synagogues, 21 high schools, and 17 towns around the Greater Boston area. This diverse group of students was split up to participate on one of the two teen boards, ultimately raising over $46,000 and making grants to seven nonprofits addressing either the issue of domestic violence or mental health.
This coming year, the program will be expanding to three teen boards and will meet once a month for three and a half hours either on Sunday late afternoons at Hebrew College in Newton, Temple Beth Elohim in Wellesley on Thursday evenings or at Temple Emunah in Lexington (day of the week TBA). Jewish students entering grades 9-12 in the fall of 2017 from any school and town within the Greater Boston community are invited to apply and participate on one of the three boards upon acceptance.
This is an extremely impactful program and wonderful opportunity for teens interested in learning about strategic philanthropy to become involved and make a difference in their own communities. An 11th grade program participant from this past year’s board said that “this has been the most amazing, inspiring, and engaging experience and I know that I will use all of the resources, skills, and learning I have been blessed to take away from this experience in all of my future endeavors.”It’s clear that JTFGB is providing the teens of the greater Boston Jewish community with the foundation to become philanthropic leaders.
Teens who are interested in participating in JTFGB should be ready to listen, think critically, participate and work well with their peers, debate, write, actively engage, and of course enjoy themselves throughout the course of the year. Minimal work, perhaps a couple of hours, may be assigned in between meetings. Participation in the program costs $360. No applicant will be denied participation based on financial need. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis throughout the summer.