The Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago today
closed its 2013 Annual Campaign at $81.54 million, $2.2 million more than the
2012 Campaign total. This is the largest one-year increase since the economic
downturn in 2008. The Campaign secured 4,790 new gifts in 2013
and the total number of gifts was close to 1,000 more than in 2012.
Annual Campaign is the largest piece of a multi-pronged fundraising effort that
last year yielded $198,386,439 to support JUF's vital network of social service
In addition to the Annual Campaign, JUF/Jewish Federation of
Metropolitan Chicago raises funds through bequests, the Centennial Campaign,
corporate partnerships, donations to emergency relief efforts, donor advised
funds, support foundations, and other sources. As a major funder of social
welfare endeavors aimed at serving the needs of the most vulnerable populations
in Illinois, the Federation also is a recipient of significant grants -
totaling nearly $11.5 million in 2013 - from government and foundations. In
addition, the Federation is a major beneficiary of the United Way of
"It is humbling to witness how our donors have
responded to an uptick in the economy with an equal, if not greater, uptick in
charitable giving. They are turning right around and using their improving
situations to help others who remain in need," said Michael Zaransky, 2013
The Annual Campaign is JUF's largest fundraising vehicle,
aimed at underwriting more than 70 humanitarian agencies and programs that
feed, clothe, shelter, educate, and provide healthcare, rescue and respite to
300,000 Chicagoans of all faiths and 2 million Jews in Israel and around the
"This is a tremendous testament to the resilience and generosity of
our community, and the incredible work of our lay leadership and professional
staff," said JUF Chairman David T. Brown.
The 2013 Campaign sets a strong
foundation for the organization to meet its budgetary obligations and address
challenges that lie ahead following J-HELP, the recently-concluded initiative
launched at the start of the recession. The initiative was launched to help
needy Chicago-area Jews weather the economic storm, including many who had
previously been JUF donors, but found themselves newly in need of support in
the wake of job cuts and major financial losses. J-HELP brought in nearly $6
million of JUF revenue last year alone.
"J-HELP increased our agencies'
capacity to provide basic human services when the bottom fell out of the
economy, helping people feed their children, pay their rent, and find jobs,"
Zaransky said. In lieu of J-HELP, new initiatives such as the 2014 JUF Match
Fund and the Breakthrough
Fund aim to help JUF continue to nimbly and effectively meet crucial
community needs moving forward.
"Though our nation may be on the road to
recovery, many of the most vulnerable people we serve continue to struggle,"
said Brown. "We are fortunate to have such a robust engine for resource
development that ensures we can continue to be there for those who need us
Numbers tell the story
In 2013, through
JUF-supported agencies and programs, Chicago's Jewish community provided
469,288 meals, food bags and grocery gift cards to those in need; gave more
than $4.7 million in emergency cash grants to help nearly 4,000 families with
housing, medicine and other critical needs; helped over 1,000 unemployed
professionals find jobs; made sure that 22,947 people got free or highly
subsidized mental or physical healthcare; and provided support services that
helped 5,802 seniors stay in their homes rather than having to move to
institutionalized care. The JUF Hunger Awareness Project, a call to action on
hunger issues in the Chicago community, was also launched last year.
Compared to 2008, food assistance last year went to almost three times as
many people in need; four times as many cash grants were given; 30% more
workers received employment services; scholarships to Jewish camps rose 182%
and those for Jewish preschools were up 268% - and that was just in the Chicago
area. Generous JUF donors also responded immediately to disasters throughout
the country, sending critical aid in the aftermath of last year's deadly
flooding in Colorado and destructive tornadoes in central Illinois.
Internationally, JUF's overseas programs helped almost 18,000 Jews from
across the globe to begin new lives of freedom in Israel, providing assistance
with housing, Hebrew language acquisition skills, and employment assistance.
Seventeen thousand at-risk Israeli youth received scholastic and emotional
support and an aggregate $10 million in direct aid has been provided to Israeli
victims of terror.
JUF agencies also were there to provide food,
medicine, home care, winter heating supplies and other necessities to 149,901
Jewish seniors and 27,722 impoverished children in the former Soviet Union, and
Central and Eastern Europe.
A team effort
course, success doesn't happen in a bubble, and we thank and acknowledge the
many, many individuals who make what we do possible," said JUF President Steven
B. Nasatir, who praised the work of Zaransky and the Campaign End-of-Year
Co-Chairs Adam and Debbie Winick. "Our devoted volunteers worked tirelessly
throughout the year to fulfill our mission, and we are deeply grateful to them,
as well as to each of our JUF divisions and the countless congregations that
spread the message and garnered support."
"The lay leadership and
professional staff in Chicago are second to none," added Zaransky. "The
Campaign is a collective effort."
JUF's Annual Campaign is driven in large
part by the many divisions that make up the Jewish United Fund. Below is a
breakdown of several key components that helped make this year's Campaign a
More than 500 donors attended the 2013 Vanguard Dinner, which featured veteran stand-up comedians and stars of Curb Your Enthusiasm, Susie Essman and Richard Lewis. The event raised close to $3 million from over 300 gifts for the 2013 Campaign - a 6% gift for gift increase.
ADVANCE & MAJOR GIFTS
JUF's 2013 Advance & Major Gifts Dinner, the single largest fundraising night of the JUF Campaign year, was held at the home of Lester and Renee Crown and featured former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown. More than 200 people attended the dinner, which raised upwards of $24 million for the 2013 Campaign.
COUNTRY CLUB DAY
Country Club Day is one of the largest fundraising days of the year for JUF. In 2013, over 1,500 members attended JUF Country Club Day, spread across nine country clubs in the Chicagoland area, raising over $6 million for the 2013 Campaign - $1 million more than in 2012 - as well as raising critical awareness of JUF/Federation's work.
TRADES, INDUSTRIES & PROFESSIONS
just three nights, at three dinners, the Trades, Industries & Professionals
Divisions raised more than $1.9 million for the 2013 JUF Annual Campaign,
through the generous support of more than 3,000 attendees. Of the 1,500 gifts
made at the dinners, more than 300 were from first-time givers to JUF. In
addition, the Trade Dinners brought in over $1.1 million in corporate
sponsorship, exceeding totals from 2012.
"Thank you to the thousands of
people who attended the 2013 TIP Dinners, as well as to our corporate sponsors
who stepped up to help subsidize the dinners and support the community," said
Jason L. Peltz, TIP Vice-Chair. "Together, we provided invaluable support to
the 2013 campaign and reinforced TIP's leadership role in and responsibility to
Guest speakers at 2013 TIP events included Ambassador
Yehuda Avner, Author of The Prime Ministers: An Intimate Narrative of
Israeli Leadership; Co-Founder & CEO of Whole Foods, John Mackey; and
the Honorable Cory Booker, Mayor of Newark, New Jersey.
JUF Women's Division had another spectacular year of
fundraising and programming throughout Chicago and the suburbs. The commitment,
drive and generosity of the Women's Board, Young Women's Board, Young Women's
City Council, and Women's City Council raised more than $12.8 million from more
than 7,000 donors for the 2013 Annual Campaign. Successful events focused on
matters such as Jewish identity, entrepreneurship and world politics. The Spring
Event, the Women's Division's largest Campaign event of the year, brought a
record-breaking 1,000 women together to hear guest speaker Chelsea Clinton.
Other notable speakers at events throughout the year included mountain climber
Alison Levine; Alexandra Wilkis Wilson, co-founder of Gilt Groupe and New York
Times bestselling co-author of By Invitation Only: How We Built Gilt and
Changed the Way Millions Shop; and Master Sommelier, Boarding House Keeper
and former host of the hit PBS show Check Please!, Alpana Singh.
"I am very proud of the success achieved in total dollars raised, the
quality of all our signature events and the stellar support from the Women's
Division members," said 2013 Women's Board Campaign Chair Hilary Greenberg.
"Building on a strong foundation, I am so pleased that we have helped raise the
Campaign bar to a new level."
In 2013, JUF's Young Leadership Division (YLD)
connected thousands of young Jewish people to JUF through a wide variety of
social and educational programming. YLD raised more than $2.4 million from more
than 4,500 gifts. YLD kicked off the 2013 Campaign with the fifth annual Big
Event featuring comedian Aziz Ansari, which attracted more than 2,400
attendees, including hundreds of first-time donors, and raised more than
$300,000 for the community. Committed to building a strong next generation, YLD
integrates a JUF educational component into most of their programming. In 2013,
these programs included a summer trip to Israel, volunteer opportunities at
JUF-supported agencies, sports leagues for a cause and leadership
"The success of YLD's 2013 campaign says a great deal about the
priorities and commitment to tzedakah (righteous giving) and
tikkun olam (repair of the world) of younger Jews living in and around
Chicago," said 2013 YLD Campaign Chair David Goldenberg. "I'm very proud that
my generation has again stepped up to the plate and done our part to build a
strong Jewish community and provide for those in need."
CONGREGATIONS & COMMUNITY CAMPAIGN
In 2013, 36
congregations participated in 30 congregational events, raising more than $1.6
million through The Congregations & Community Campaign.
congregations are the backbone of the Chicago Jewish community," said Jane
Cadden Lederman, 2013 Chair. "Their partnership with JUF enables both to
combine their energy and resources to provide the needed help locally and to
Jewish communities around the world."
Over 2,800 people attended the
events, which hosted prominent journalists, authors and other public figures.
Overall, the Congregations & Community Campaign raised $6.3 million from
more than 5500 donors.
volunteers were an integral part of the success of the 2013 Campaign, raising
$5.1 million at four community-wide events and surpassing the 2012 phonothon
totals by more than $1 million. Throughout Chicago and the suburbs, more than
950 volunteers reached more than 3,500 donors.
Missions show JUF donors, first-hand, how
their dollars are making an impact on Jewish communities abroad. Last year,
close to 700 people traveled to Israel on JUF community, family and VIP
missions. The trips raised more than $1 million for the 2013 Campaign.
"As my family and I experienced firsthand when we traveled to Israel for my
daughter's bat mitzvah, the JUF Missions Department provides an unparalleled
opportunity for members of our community to see up close the positive,
life-changing impact JUF has on vulnerable population groups in Israel, and to
gain a better understanding of why our support of JUF is so critical," said
Sandy Perl, 2013 Missions Chair.
The 2013 calendar included three new
missions. JUF partnered with the Birthright Foundation to target parents of
Birthright alumni, with the goal of providing a similar Birthright type of
experience to the parents. In addition, JUF sent 20 participants to Cuba in
March for the first time in more than 10 years. JUF's Mission Israel 65 was a
community mission, celebrating Israel's 65th anniversary in April.
ISRAEL SOLIDARITY DAY
For more than 30 years, JUF
has hosted Israel Solidarity Day, Chicago's largest community-wide event
celebrating Yom Ha'atzmaut, Israel's Independence Day. Last year, more
than 8,000 people from all parts of the community gathered at Highland Park's
Ravinia Festival for the 2013 event, which also featured the Walk with Israel,
in honor of Israel's 65th birthday, and J-Serve, a hands-on community service
project for Jewish teens.
"To see thousands of people gathered for Israel
Solidarity Day, not because of a specific crisis in Israel but only because of
their love and whole-hearted support for Israel, was truly inspiring," said
Rabbi Carl Wolkin, event co-chair.
The 2013 event brought in more than 600
more JUF gifts than 2012, and the money raised provided Israeli children with
supplies to enrich learning and literacy.
Thirty-two Chicagoans ran the 2013 Bank of America
Chicago Marathon as part of the inaugural "TeamJUF". Runners included JUF
Chairman David T. Brown, Consul General of Israel to the Midwest Roey Gilad, as
well as a former JUF client who is now a donor. The team raised more than
$77,000 to support JUF.
'Continuing to build
"Being part of JUF is a way to be a part of the
greater Jewish people, and express our Jewishness in the 21st
century," Zaransky said, reflecting on his term as Campaign Chairman. "It's
belonging to something bigger than the individual self. I think that feeling
really resonated with the Jewish community this year."
Nasatir said the
organization is looking forward to the new opportunities 2014 will bring. "We
are constantly evolving and improving our ability to serve our changing
community, and we look forward to continuing to build momentum as we move into
the new year."
contribute to JUF today.