BJN 2.0: Objectives and Recommendations

Posted on: March 30th, 2017 by tgregory

Objective: Increase participation in Jewish organizational life at all levels, especially among those who are marginally affiliated or who have not integrated into the community.

Recommendation: Create a center for outreach and engagement for Jewish newcomers, volunteering opportunities and volunteer development, and a source of all events occurring in the Jewish community. This three-year trial program would be staffed by a professional who would also coordinate community-wide welcome and information fairs. 


Objective: Reach out to the Jewish community’s poor and nearly poor.

Recommendation: Develop an outreach and marketing campaign by Jewish Family Service and the Federation to promote the array of available confidential financial services, targeting especially places frequented by seniors and others who might need the services.


Objective: Improve Jewish communal leadership development and training

Recommendation: Develop a leadership training program that will identify, train, and engage leaders for the Federation and other Jewish organizations as well as a specific plan to each leader’s integration and involvement in key roles.


Objective: Increase awareness of the Federation’s impact

Recommendation: Develop educational programs about the Federation’s mission and scope that use storytelling to show its impact on individuals. 


Objective: Enhance advocacy of Israel and understanding of Judaism and Jewish values through travel experiences.

Recommendation: Fund and support missions to Israel and other places of Jewish interest for members of the broader Nashville community like the recent trip with mainline Christian clergy. Promote the Federation as a resource for all Israel missions and trips. 


Objective: Educate the larger community on important  Jewish issues.

Recommendation: Use strategies such as a community-wide Jewish cultural fair to promote Jewish and Israeli culture, a movable exhibit for college campuses that promotes Israel products and innovation,  an essay contest for high school students on the influence if Israel Technology on meeting global needs,  and hosting more interfaith events and programs at the Gordon Jewish Community Center to build familiarity and friendships.


Objective: Build relationships to the larger community through strategic involvement.

Recommendation: Have Jewish community members serve on the boards of four or five selected organizations that have been identified as aligning with Jewish values, create a database of Jewish community leaders who serve on non-profit boards, establish a group of ambassadors to speak to non-Jewish groups about timely Jewish issues and concerns, create a “Friends of the Jewish Community” group for non-Jewish leaders who want to support the Jewish community.


Objective: Support and increase Jewish community building.

Recommendation: Support efforts that build Jewish community and create opportunities for increased engagement, including including community-wide Jewish experiences, Jewish holiday celebrations, local and domestic trips, and new activities that target Jewish clusters beyond the community’s demographic core.


Objective: Increase programs and services beyond the community’s geographic core, especially for active and senior adults. 

Recommendation: Add a community-wide senior coordinator who will be the contact for all senior service and program needs. The coordinator can refer to offerings both within and beyond the Jewish community, and can help engage those in outlying areas by establishing neighborhood “clusters”. This coordinator should convene and coordinate all those in the Jewish community who serve senior adults to provide for a more seamless and coordinated service delivery system.


Objective: Engage those for whom the high cost of participation in Jewish life is a barrier. 

Recommendation: To increase membership in Jewish organizations and institutions, look for alternatives to the one-size-fits-all approach, including tiered and segmented fees based on services used, “friends of” membership categories, and community-wide free membership trials for newcomers, newlyweds, and the newly retired. Encourage organizations to work together to promote open houses and free and low-cost Jewish activities.  •