This year, the Jewish Federation of Ottawa launched an extraordinary Annual Campaign. Led by Campaign Chairs Rabbi Reuven Bulka and Aviva Ben-Choreen, the entire team was determined to pull out all the stops to ensure that the entire $500,000 Challenge Fund, which matches new and increased gifts to the Campaign, was fully utilized.
Increasing fundraising in one year by 25 per cent was an audacious goal and is now within reach!
This bold endeavour began when three generous donor families agreed to provide $500,000 for a matching-donation fund. Their leadership put in motion a wide-spanning community drive signalling that this year’s Campaign would not be business as usual.
Here are a few examples:
- The annual golf tournament held a unique auction wherein players did not bid on luxury items, but rather on special education in Jewish day school, raising $51,000 in a matter of minutes;
- The Campaign Kickoff featured a brand new community-driven event. Under the leadership of the Zaret family, our agencies showcased their energy, talent and drive in an entertaining and inclusive lip-sync battle;
- Determined to help donors follow their passion, a new program was created to allow donors to designate the increased portion of their gift to a specific outcome of the Jewish Superhighway (Jewish experiences, Safety and Security, the Vulnerable and Jewish Education);
- Synagogues, such as Kehillat Beth Israel, Temple Israel, and Congregation Machzikei Hadas have stepped up and hosted call nights for the Campaign.
Clearly, the Challenge Fund has infused the Campaign with renewed energy and spirit. There are now 120 new donors and counting. Additionally, 58 per cent of this year’s Campaign donors increased their gift.
To date, there have been $400,000 in new and increased gifts to the Campaign, which means that our community now has $800,000 additional dollars to realize the vision of the Jewish Superhighway where Jewish life is vibrant and no one is left behind.
“Having lived in Ottawa for so many years, I know first-hand what a generous community we have. We are thrilled to be 80 per cent of the way to our goal and grateful to all our wonderful donors. If you have already made your gift, thank you. If you have not yet made a gift, there is still time and perhaps your gift will be the one that gets us to the goal!” said Rabbi Bulka.
Visit www.jewishottawa.com to donate online, or call 613-798-4685, ext. 272. Thank you!
Micah Garten is director of development of the Jewish Federation of Ottawa. He can be reached at email@example.com.