We at the Harold Grinspoon Foundation are excited to announce that we have awarded our first round of PJ Library Alliance Spark Engagement Grants to expand and deepen engagement opportunities for families raising Jewish children across North America.
These grants, totaling $70,000, were awarded to new partners of PJ Library. The selected initiatives emphasize creating social connections between families raising Jewish children by bringing families together for shared Jewish experiences as well as building connections between the participants and the breadth of Jewish life. These grants are also helping PJ library grow and diversify engagement opportunities for families through the work of innovative organizations.
These grants are part of a five-year strategy to extend Jewish engagement in North America through the support of the newly-formed PJ Library Alliance. Our partners in the Alliance are the William Davidson Foundation; the Jim Joseph Foundation; the William and Audrey Farber Philanthropic Fund; Diane & Guilford Glazer/Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles; the Howard and Geraldine Polinger Family Foundation; Walter, Arnee, Sarah and Aaron Winshall; the Susser Family Trust; and an anonymous partner.
This year’s selected initiatives will work closely with PJ Library and our network of current partners as well as connect together as a cohort. Additional grants, all across the United States and Canada will be awarded twice a year.
We look forward to working with these partners and seeing all of their exciting initiatives come to life.
National Ramah Commission - Ramah Day Camp in Nyack
Bim Bam Shabbat
Bim Bam Shabbat invites parents and young children (ages 0-4) into camp for low-barrier pre-Shabbat programming including storytelling and music on Fridays during summer camp. This Spark Engagement Grant will allow Ramah to extend into the off-season with monthly programming throughout the year around the greater metro New York area including Manhattan, the Bronx, and Westchester. Ramah will also create twice a year immersive days of storytelling, drama, arts and crafts, and movement based on beloved PJ Library stories and Ramah-style programming.
Repair the World
Family Jewish Service Learning Ambassador
Repair the World imagines a world in which service is a key component of Jewish life. Their work in local communities has taught them that service and volunteerism inspire connection for many Jews who have not connected in other ways. This Spark Engagement Grant will expand their reach in New York to include families with young children by hiring a Jewish Service Learning Ambassador who will engage with families in a community grounded in Jewish values and service and help parents make service a regular part of their family culture.
Shaboom! Early Childhood Initiative
Shaboom! is a platform to help preschoolers and their parents learn about Jewish values and take specific Jewish actions in their everyday lives to help improve the world. With in-depth parent feedback throughout the design process, Shaboom! is a series of animated videos, companion materials for parents, engagement activities delivered via text message, and select in-person events. Parents will be empowered to explain "what's Jewish" about PJ Library themes such as courage, gratitude, and welcoming guests and with their children, model attitudes and behaviors. This Spark Engagement Grant supports the creation and dissemination of Shaboom! and its content, including PJ Library resources, for actionable ways to bring practical, fun ideas from everyday Judaism into the home of our subscribers.
For more information about PJ Library Alliance Spark Engagement grants, email us here.
February 4, 2016