For more than five years, the Jewish Federation of Ottawa’s Emerging Gen (EG) Grants have been providing grants of up to $2,000 for members of the community’s emerging generation (ages 18-45). The funds have supported innovative ideas, which include a Jewish content element, positively impact our community, and have a strong implementation plan.
Many applications over the years have revolved around one of the most commonly celebrated Jewish traditions – Shabbat dinner. Some programs have included interesting Jewish speakers while others integrated important themes.
Recent successful Shabbat dinner-related applications have included the Big Comfy Shabbat Dinner and the Pride Shabbat Dinner.
To help spread the word about EG Grants and due to the strong history of Shabbat dinner-related ideas, the EG Grants Review Committee launched an initiative to promote EG Grants in association with The Shabbat Project – www.theshabbosproject.org – taking place over the weekend of October 27-28.
The Shabbat Project is a global grassroots movement which brings Jews from around the world together to celebrate our shared heritage of Shabbat. The organization’s purpose is to create a new Jewish future based on Jewish unity, pride, and values.
According to its global organizers, “The Shabbat Project transcends the barriers that seem to separate us. It is our opportunity to rejuvenate family and community life, restore Jewish pride and identity, and strengthen Jewish unity across the globe.”
Since 2013, there have been events in over 1,150 cities, in at least 95 different countries. In 2016, there were over 6,000 international partners coordinating Shabbat Project events.
The main types of events include actual Shabbat dinners, challah bakes, and Havdalah concerts (from drum circles to an Israeli-American Jewish rock band).
Although EG Grants are available year-round, the team is excited to help Ottawa’s community get together and celebrate Shabbat in a significant way this October.
The EG Grant Review Committee’s pitch is for members of the EG community to come up with a Shabbat Project 2017 idea and to apply for funding to help make the idea a reality.
The committee’s suggestions to get your brainstorming session going include a challah bake (men’s challah bake, bake for a charity, family/kids bake), Shabbat meal (kid friendly/themed, eat and learn), Havdalah (at the park, wine and cheese, picnic style), and crafts (making Shabbat candles, decorating Kiddush/Havdalah sets, making challah covers).