Seven Jewish foundations joined together to announce the launch of the Jewish Community Response and Impact Fund (JCRIF), which will provide more than $80 million in interest-free loans and grants to help maintain the infrastructure of Jewish life that advances Jewish education, engagement and leadership.
JCRIF’s funders include the Aviv Foundation, the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation, the Jim Joseph Foundation, Maimonides Fund, the Paul E. Singer Foundation, and the Wilf Family Foundation.
JCRIF includes two components: a loan program and an aligned grant program. The loan program will provide short-term unsecured loans to alleviate cash flow challenges and to enable organizations to maintain services and/or make payroll in the coming three to six months. The loan program will be based at the Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF), which will act as the loan fund administrator and lender of record.
It will also partner with the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA), which will source and recommend loan applications. Shira Hutt, JFNA chief of staff and an experienced nonprofit and philanthropic professional, is JFNA’s liaison to the program. JFNA will work with key national Jewish networks, including members of the National Emergency Coalition, as well as independent Jewish nonprofits, to source loan applicants, officials said.
The aligned grant program will provide a combination of emergency funding for immediate needs and strategic funding to address organizational and sector-wide shifts catalyzed by the crisis. The program will provide an simplified and accelerated application and reporting system for applicants and grant recipients. The grant program will be directed by Felicia Herman, who will be temporarily seconded from her role as executive director of The Natan Fund. The grants will supplement each foundation’s current grantmaking to Jewish organizations.
To create an efficient process that respects the time of applicants and ensures quick turnaround and deployment of resources, both programs will proactively source funding opportunities rather than accept unsolicited proposals.
The fund is seeking additional investors into either or both funding programs. More information on the Jewish Community Response and Impact Fund is available at https://www.jewishtogether.org/responseimpactfund.