The CJP South Area Committee met twice this spring to discuss and review applications for this year’s South Area Community Grants. The $30,000 grant pool encourages South Area Jewish organizations and individuals to work together to enhance and contribute to Jewish life in the South Area.

The applications were evaluated on the merit of their alignment with the following funding priorities:

  • Foster a sense of unity and connection among all members of the South Area Jewish community
  • Create collaborative partnerships among organizations to meet the needs of a geographically dispersed community
  • Promote outreach efforts that engage those who are unaffiliated with the Jewish community
  • Build new leadership
  • Have an articulated plan for sustainability

This year’s applications were particularly exciting. The committee was heartened to see new synagogues collaborating with one another, innovative programming for unaffiliated families with young children, and opportunities for teens from different schools and towns to meet one another through social justice and inclusion focused programming.

The following organizations and programs were awarded grants for programs that will begin this fall.

The Grantees and Programs

Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater BostonTELEM
A grant to support TELEM programming in the South Area. TELEM is an innovative program for Jewish teens (grades 8-12) that integrates social action, learning and reflection. This program is connecting teens across congregations throughout the South Area by participating in meaningful community service projects.

B’Yachad South Area Religious SchoolSukkot Family Camp 2016
Sukkot Family Camp will bring over 400 South Area families together to celebrate Sukkot together as a community. Five South Area congregations (Temple Beth Abraham, Temple Beth Am, Temple Beth David, Temple Beth Emunah, and Temple Chayai Shalom) will participate in activities including text study, food projects, arts and crafts and games in the fall of 2016.

B’Yachad South Area Religious SchoolPJ Library Story Time with B’Yachad
A monthly program in partnership with PJ Library that is open to families in the South Area with children 2-6 years old. Each session allows families from across the South Area to meet one another and to engage in thematic activities related to the content in the books they receive through PJ Library at home.

Congregation Sha’aray Shalom: L’Dor Vador – From Generation to Generation – a Program of Outreach to Vulnerable Populations
A community outreach program targeting unaffiliated seniors, young singles and couples ages 25-40, and young interfaith families with children. Specialized monthly programming for each target demographic aims to create Jewish community and connection to Congregation Sha’aray Shalom. Senior programming will focus on Jewish education and enrichment, young singles and couples programming will focus on leadership development and networking, and young interfaith families with children programming will focus on Jewish holiday engagement.

Congregation Adath of SharonThe Friendship Circle of Sharon
Friendship Circle promotes the full inclusion of individuals with special needs within the Jewish community. The grant will be used to further develop inclusive social interactions between special needs individuals and teen volunteers through weekly specialized programming. Friendship Circle’s programs foster leadership and Tikun Olam opportunities for teens across the South Shore Area, including those in Sharon High School, Gann Academy and Maimonides.

Ner Tamid Community Day SchoolHebrew Play
Hebrew Play uses authentic Israeli books, music, and sensory activities to connect both Hebrew speaking families and families interested in learning Hebrew through song, music making and play. This program will be held at Ner Tamid Community Day School at Temple Israel of Sharon for young children ages 0-5 years old.

Gateways: Access to Jewish EducationSocial Skills South
Social Skills South will bring the Social Thinking curriculum though a Jewish lens to preschools and congregational schools of the South Area via professional development workshops for educational staff. This program will address social-emotional challenges evidenced in difficult student behavior, lack of classroom readiness and deficits in social skills.

Jewish Community Centre of Sharon (Temple Israel of Sharon)Live from 92nd Street Y Program
Live from 92nd Street Y Program broadcasts lectures, interviews and readings from nationally and internationally recognized political figures, entertainers and authors. This grant will bring the Live from 92nd Street Y programs to the South Area to allow teens and adults from various Jewish communities to meet in a central location and learn together via live web simulcast from the Live from 92nd Street Y panelists. Pre and post discussions will be led by clergy from synagogues across the region.

The Boston Jewish Film FestivalBoston Jewish Film Festival Foxboro Screening and Community Discussion
This grant supports the BJFF Foxboro Screening, and specifically funds a speaker for a post-film discussion. The screening and discussion brings the South Area Jewish community together to discuss a contemporary issue facing the Jewish community, and provides the opportunity for South Area residents to enjoy the BJFF without traveling to Boston.