Responding to a year of extraordinary need, with an eye on opportunities ahead, the Jewish Women's Foundation allocated $413,000 in grants supporting 27 organizations in 2021. Included in this year's allocations are 10 grants supported by the Ellie Fund, focused on reproductive health care, lifting women and girls out of poverty, and promoting health, non-violence, and career development.
Through its participation in the Jewish Women's Collective Response Fund, a partnership between five foundations and funds, JWF provided $10,000 towards urgent grants addressing the staggering increase of domestic violence in Israel due to COVID-19.
Launched in 1997, JWF--an independent project of JUF--expands and improves opportunities and choices in all aspects of life for Jewish women and girls through strategic and effective grantmaking, empowering Jewish women as leaders, funders, and decision-makers.
"As we ended 2020, we saw the tremendous need to double down on our funding for so many incredible organizations in Chicago and in Israel who are working tirelessly, even during the pandemic, to move the needle on creating a more just, fair world for Jewish women and girls," said Annette Lidawer, JWF Grants Committee Chair. "With great pride, JWF will be supporting four new projects and making 12 renewal grants in 2021."
Grantee partners in 2021 include:
Itach Maaki Women Lawyers for Social Justice City For All:
creates coalitions of public officials, activists, and female leaders across Israel, to advocate on behalf of women and girls.
Jewish Women's Collective Response Fund : meets the immediate safety needs of Israeli women affected by violence during COVID-19 by expanding the work of MASLAN, Tahel, and Women's Spirit.
The Rackman Center at Bar Ilan University Protecting Protective Mothers:
addresses the growing legal challenges of women and families in Israel experiencing domestic violence.
Sacred Spaces Aleinu:Safeguarding Our Children:
raises the standards of child protection in Jewish youth serving institutions through prevention work and policy development in partnership with JCFS Chicago.
Adva Center Empowering the Empowerers:
trains, supports, and coaches Mayoral Advisors on gender equality, addressing the concerns of women and girls throughout Israel.
ACLU:Roger Baldwin Foundation Women's and Reproductive Rights Project:
safeguards protections around health care for women, and engages in public advocacy and education.
The Center for Advancement of Women in the Public Sphere at the Van Leer Institute The Gender Index:
tracks gender inequality and gaps to inform, track, and create social change for women and girls in Israel.
La'Ofek - Hope for the Future Achotenu - Academic Nursing Program:
prepares Ethiopian Israeli women pursuing a career in nursing, an occupation currently in significant demand.
Ma'ase Center Association Women's Leadership Training:
equips marginalized Israeli teens for professional and economic stability from pre-army prep to careers in public service, government, or nonprofit work.
Olim Beyahad Employment, Empowerment, and Leadership for Ethiopian Israeli Women:
enhances the career trajectory of Ethiopian Israeli university graduates and increases integration into the professional work force across sectors.
jGirls Magazine: operates an online magazine and community created by and for self-identifying Jewish teen girls to share their voices with the world and each other.
Kaleidoscope Early Childhood Educators as Leaders of Diversity Education:
trains Israeli female educators to use a methodology that values cultural differences, acceptance, and civic engagement to promote a peaceful, shared society.
Metro Chicago Hillel Feminism, Judaism, and Anti-Racism:
expands Jewish feminist education at Silverstein Base Hillel. In partnership with Moishe House and JUF's Young Leadership Division, participants explore their identities and how to be effective allies for racial justice.
Ohr Torah Stone Susi Bradfield Women's Institute of Halakhic Leadership:
runs an elite, five-year, full-time institute in Israel training female scholars in Talmud and
halakha (Jewish Law
The Eden Center: makes the mikvah experience safe and relevant for women across Israel and the diaspora; creating culturally sensitive medical and educational resources.
No Shame On U: eliminates the stigma, normalizes the conversation, and raises awareness of mental health conditions and well-being in the Jewish and wider communities.
Elizabeth Abrams is the Assistant Vice President of Communications for the Jewish United Fund of Chicago.