Jewish Teens Grant $50,000 for Community Needs

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The 2014-15 Maurice Saltzman Youth Panel of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland recommended grants totaling $50,000 to 13 organizations for crucial programs in the Jewish and general communities.

Eli Giterman and Jordan Goodman presented the panel’s recommendations to the Jewish Federation of Cleveland’s Board of Trustees on May 20, 2015. Recommendations from the panel of 34 juniors and seniors representing public and private high schools and 5 different synagogues throughout Greater Cleveland were unanimously approved by the board.

Some of the Jewish community grants included $7,500 to the Hebrew Shelter Home for a back-up generator, funds to Gross Schechter Day School and The Agnon School for Tikkun Olam service projects, $7,200 to the Mandel Jewish Community Center for companion counselors for day campers with disabilities, $7,500 to support backpacks with school supplies for Ethiopian first graders in Israel, a program run by our international partner, the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee; and $3,000 to The Free Medical Clinic of Greater Cleveland for the Teen Clinic and Outreach Education program.

Prior to the Board of Trustees meeting, panel members and their families gathered for a reception to celebrate their accomplishments. Federation President Stephen H. Hoffman congratulated the group on their successful collaboration and philanthropic spirit. Panelists commented on how much they learned about community needs, vulnerable populations, evaluation of grant proposals and the struggle to prioritize needs when resources are limited.

Panel members, selected through a competitive application process, met seven times throughout the school year. They created a Request for Proposals, reviewed grant applications, learned about consensus decision making and, in the end, had a tremendous impact on programs and organizations which improve the lives of others.

For information about submitting nominations or obtaining an application for the 2015-16 Saltzman Youth Panel, contact program coordinator Leora Hoenig or 216-593-2798. Application deadline is September 3, 2015.

A few moments captured

About Saltzman Youth Panel:

The Maurice Saltzman Youth Grant Program of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland was established in the spring of 1998 through a generous gift from Shirley Saltzman and her family in memory of the late Maurice Saltzman. The program perpetuates the goals of Maurice Saltzman, a past president of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland who cared deeply about educating the next generation of Jewish community leadership. Each year, a new Saltzman Youth Panel makes decisions to allocate $50,000 to worthy organizations – 85% of which are awarded to programs serving the Jewish community. The other 15% is awarded to non-profit programs serving the general community. Through this process, the participants learn about the philanthropic process and responding to community needs.

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