ISJL working on $1 million challenge grant fundraiser

The Jackson-based Goldring/Woldenberg Institute of Southern Jewish Life is working on a $1 million matching campaign challenge, and has a short time to get commitments.

An anonymous donor has offered a 1:2 match of $500,000, meaning if the agency raises $1 million, it receives a matching $500,000.

All pledges or donations must be received by March 20, though payment on large pledges can extend until March 20, 2018. Pledges can be from individuals, foundations or corporations, and stock donations are welcome.

“Getting the call from the anonymous donor, out of the blue, offering this challenge — it’s such a gift,” said Macy Hart, founder and president of the Institute. “We haven’t had this sort of opportunity since 2013. We hope that this matching challenge will inspire supporters old and new to make contributions to the ISJL, so we can keep delivering all of the programs, resources, and staff support so vital to the communities we serve.”

The Institute offers a range of services to Jewish communities large and small in a 13-state region that includes Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and the Florida panhandle. Traveling rabbis serve small congregations unable to afford their own rabbis, the Institute has a standardized religious school curriculum used in about 70 congregations with support from a crew of visiting Education Fellows, does cultural programming and historic preservation, and has a community engagement wing for social action.

A video about the campaign can be viewed here.