The Foundation, with professional assistance from Rosov Consulting, have crafted a set of Demonstrable Outcomes that it hopes to towards within the local Jewish community through its focus area funding.
These Outcomes Include:
- Jewish Cincinnatians can find options for Jewish learning and engagement in Cincinnati that meet their needs.
- Participants in Foundation -supported Jewish learning experiences gain a deeper connection to their Jewish values, heritage, and identity.
- Through their participation in local Jewish organizations, congregations, and grassroots initiatives, Jewish Cincinnatians are expanding and strengthening their Jewish social networks.
- Basic physical, psychological, and emotional well-being needs of Jewish Cincinnatians are being met.
Research and Learning About Our Community
Following the rollout of the 2019 Cincinnati Jewish Community Study, The Jewish Foundation, in coordination with Federation, engaged in further analysis of and reflection about the learnings. The data indicates that almost half of Jewish adults seek greater connection to Jewish life and practice, many of whom have little involvement in organized Jewish life and experience different barriers to connection. While these trends are relevant to the entire community, they play out in meaningful ways with particular segments, including interfaith families with children, families with young children ages 0-5, and young adults without children.
More information about the Community Study can be found in this infographic and on the Community Study website.
The Community Study data have informed the Foundation’s current learning agenda to explore the three aforementioned segments in our community, which began with focus groups in the fall of 2020 and culminated in community conversations with organizational leaders about the applications of this data in the spring of 2021. This research is part of a broader learning agenda that over time, will include more diversity in age and life stage. Our learning will build on the work of the Federation’s Beyond 2020 focus groups which previously engaged many of these segment
New Focus Areas
The Foundation seeks to leverage this information and use it to inform its development as a strategic funder. This includes defining its goals and outcomes and launching new experimental funding opportunities aimed at building broader connections with individuals who often are on the periphery of organized Jewish life. At the same time, the Foundation remains committed to core communal institutions and the individuals who frequent them, and will apply a strategic lens to this work, as well. Taken together, with the new initiatives in tandem with the current grant portfolio, the Foundation will be guided by the following focus areas:
- Create a broader connection to the Jewish Community for individuals with diverse expressions of Jewish life and practice.
- Create an expanded delivery system of services that is relevant to the plurality of the Cincinnati Jewish community; this will involve thinking creatively about the delivery mechanisms that currently exist along with those that can be newly designed or reimagined.
- Act where significant investment of capital makes a difference. The Foundation is in a unique position to allocate time and distance to think strategically, long term and holistically and commit financial resources to make scale-level investments intended to bring about extraordinary impact – and evolution when needed.