It was another year for the record books at the Jewish Federation of Greater Vancouver.
Our Annual Campaign rose to a record $8.3 million in community support in 2015. We would like to acknowledge our incredibly generous donors, as well as the hard work of our 300 volunteer canvassers, a record 75 of whom canvassed for the first time. Together, our donors and volunteers met face to face to talk about community support a record 600 times. As a Federation, we have always known that the best way to hear what our donors care most about is to meet with them in person. We would like to express our gratitude to those who chose to help our community through the Federation Annual Campaign, and to those who took the extra time to meet in person to have meaningful conversations about tzedakah and tikkun olam. Because of you, our community and our Federation have more reasons than ever to feel confident.
Through the campaign our donors are helping thousands of Jews in need both locally and globally. This year, we worked to allocate the proceeds of 2014’s record $8.0 million campaign in ways that honour our longstanding partnerships with 37 local community organizations, and reflected the flexibility requested through the successful strategic priorities process undertaken last year. Agency partners saw modest increases in unrestricted support and community engagement grants allowed our Federation to make small but important investments in new programs that will make a big difference. Our Jewish Education Task Force released its final report, which will help us better address the needs of those students in both our day schools and supplementary school programs across the Lower Mainland.
Through our Israel and Overseas Committee, we were able to make some significant strategic investments in our partnership region, including the launch of a new mental health counselling program in Kiryat Shmona, where children and young adults can be treated by psychiatrists close to home instead of having to make the 45 minute drive to the nearest hospital. We also welcomed, for the first time, three ShinShinim (young Israeli emissaries) who brought a little bit of Israel to our community during their year of volunteer service.
What does the future hold? That is exactly what our Board and professional staff have been working on, as we put together our 2020 Strategic Priorities. This ambitious plan will help our Federation chart a course to the end of 2020 and beyond. It was informed by the community consultation process we undertook in 2014, the National Household Survey, and the report and recommendations produced by our Jewish Education Task Force. The 2020 Strategic Priorities show how we will address our community’s evolving needs, how we will make a lasting impact in Israel and overseas communities in need, and the resources required to do this.
As you read through this Annual Report and reflect back on the accomplishments of the year, we invite you to visit jewishvancouver.com/2020 and become more familiar with the path we are charting to a more vibrant and inclusive community.
|Ezra S. Shaken
Chief Executive Officer