Teen Giving Project: Learning to Lead

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Last week, 30 goal-oriented teenagers gathered at the Abramson Center for Jewish Life in Montgomery County for the kickoff of the second year of an ambitious program. The Teen Giving Project is an eight-monthlong curriculum about philanthropy offered by the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia that will expand their understanding of Jewish giving. The program culminates in a real-life challenge where at the end of the program, the teens are expected to raise and allocate real-life grant money.

From now through May 2018 the teens will learn fundraising, communication and decision-making skills. They’ll discuss the notion of giving with Jewish values, using concepts like tikkun olam and Maimonides’ tzedakah levels. By consensus, they will determine a cause they wish to fund. Then they’ll go through every grant-making step, by conducting research, creating a request for proposal, fielding and thoroughly reviewing grant applications. They’ll even learn how to read organizational and program budgets and make site visits. Finally, the teens will choose which organizations to whom to grant their money. All the while, they’ll be raising funds to meet their goal.

Sound like a lot for a teenager to handle? Think again. This year’s Teen Giving Project builds on the success of last year’s pilot program, which saw the inaugural class of 10 teens set their expectations sky-high with a fundraising goal of $10,000.

Contact Trisha Swed for more information at [email protected] or 215.832.0516.