Religions and Spirituality

Fifteen Synagogues/Organizations Selected to Participate in Create a Jewish Legacy Program

Fifteen synagogues/organizations have been selected to participate in the inaugural class of Create a Jewish Legacy, an innovative new program to help the Jewish community secure resources to remain vibrant for generations to come. Each of the selected partners has created a Legacy Team comprised of at least four volunteers and one staff member.

Locally, Create a Jewish Legacy is coordinated by the Jewish Community Foundation (JCF) of Greater MetroWest NJ, the planned giving and endowment arm of Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest NJ (Federation). Greater MetroWest is one of only 15 communities across North America selected by the Harold Grinspoon Foundation to participate in its LIFE & LEGACY partnership program (known locally as Create a Jewish Legacy).

The program is designed to teach local synagogues, day schools, and social service organizations to obtain commitments of legacy gifts from donors of all ages, life stages, and interests, thereby ensuring their future financial vitality. Through Create a Jewish Legacy people will learn how they can continue to support the places they care about through their wills and other estate planning options. Support from the Grinspoon Foundation makes it possible for JCF to provide generous incentive grants to its community partners, which help to defray some of the costs associated with getting a new program up and running.

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“We were very pleased with the quality — and quantity — of the applications received and applaud all the organizations for their thoughtful effort. Federation and JCF look forward to working with our new partners to prepare them in creating legacy gifting strategies that will help them ensure a strong Jewish future. We held the first training session in late May and were so impressed by the turnout and enthusiasm from our new partners. They dove right in!” said Kenneth Heyman, Create a Jewish Legacy chair.

“As we said to the 15 teams — almost 80 people — assembled for our first training session, now the real work begins! As a community we are very fortunate that so many talented people are putting their skills to work for the institutions they care about,” said Karen Secular, Create a Jewish Legacy program coordinator. “Most people don’t think they have the means to leave a gift that can have a lasting impact. Our legacy teams are learning how to help people see the many ways in which they can.”

The inaugural class of Create a Jewish Legacy partners includes:

Congregation Agudath Israel, Caldwell; Congregation Beth Israel, Scotch Plains; Congregation B’nai Israel, Millburn; Jewish Educational Center, Elizabeth; Jewish Family Service of Central NJ, Elizabeth; Jewish Family Service of MetroWest NJ, Florham Park; Jewish Service for the Developmentally Disabled of MetroWest, West Orange; Morristown Jewish Center Beit Yisrael; Mt. Freedom Jewish Center, Randolph; Oheb Shalom Congregation, South Orange; Temple Beth Ahm Yisrael, Springfield; Temple Beth-El Mekor Chayim, Cranford; Temple Emanu-el, Westfield; Temple Sinai, Summit; and the YM-YHWA of Union County, Union.

Learn more about Create a Jewish Legacy by contacting Karen Secular at (973) 929-2918 or ksecular@jfedgmw.or

Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest NJ (Federation) stands at the center of a network of 27 partner agencies dedicated to providing comprehensive social services and meeting the educational, vocational, recreational, and social needs of Jews locally, in Israel, and in 70 countries around the world. Federation also creates ways/spaces for people to connect to a multitude of Jewish experiences in personally meaningful ways. Responding to emergency and disaster situations around the world is another important part of the Federation mission.

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