As it prepares for its biggest fundraising event of the year – the Tzedakah Tzunday phone-a-thon on Feb. 12 – the Jewish Federation of Nashville and Middle Tennessee will launch a month-long educational campaign called 30 Days of Doing Good to highlight its impact in the local Jewish community and beyond.
Working through its partner agencies and programs, the Federation is collecting testimonials from individuals whose lives have been enriched by any of the dozens of programs, services and institutions it sponsors or helps fund.
From late January through early March, the Federation will share those testimonials daily on social media and as posters and videos at community events like the Jan. 29 President’s Award Dinner hosted by Bonim Society and open to the entire community, the Tzedakah Tzunday phone-a-thon on Feb. 12, and the Super Bowl Party/Mitzvah Project on Feb. 4 sponsored by NowGen Nashville, the Federation group for young adult professionals.
The catchphrase of the outreach effort is “Donate. Do good. Explore our impact.” Federation Asst. Executive Director Naomi Limor Sedek said its purpose is “to motivate community members to get involved with Federation at events and to inspire people to make a meaningful contribution to Federation’s 2017 annual campaign.”
The goal of this year’s campaign is $2.77 million, an increase of about 10 percent over 2016. The funds raised help support 79 local Jewish programs, institutions and agencies, including programming at synagogues and the Gordon Jewish Community Center, scholarships for Jewish day school students and overnight summer campers, counseling and emergency financial assistance through Jewish Family Service, immersion experiences in Israel for teens and college students, and transportation and other services for seniors.
Annual campaign funds also help underwrite communitywide events like the Federation’s annual Yom Ha’atzmaut celebration and Community Relations Seder, the Kosher Hot Chicken Festival, and Global Day of Jewish Learning. Campaign donations also reach far beyond Nashville, helping to support programs and services for Jews in Israel and 70 countries around the globe.
The annual Tzedakah Tzunday phone-a-thon at the GJCC typically accounts for about 20 percent of the gifts to the annual campaign. The Federation is seeking volunteers to staff one or more of three 2½-hour shifts between 9 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Each shift is preceded by 30 minutes of training to prepare callers to speak with family and friends about the Federation and the programs it funds.
For those who don’t want to make calls, there are other ways to help on Tzedakah Tzunday – providing food for volunteers, serving in limited spots sorting pledge cards, updating telephone numbers and writing letters and thank you notes.
Volunteers can sign up online at www.jewishnashville.org, the Federation’s website, or contact Andrea Crowe at (615) 354-1641 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
There will be refreshments for volunteers as well as babysitting for those who register in advance by contacting Barbara Schwarcz at (615) 354-1630 or email@example.com. •