The MATCH program will hold its fourth launch this August to encourage expanding the donor base for Jewish day schools.
The program, founded by the AVI CHAI and Kohelet Foundations in 2004, aids Jewish day schools by matching donations from new sources at a rate of 50 cents to the dollar. Donations above $10,000 qualify for the grant, and individual schools can receive up to $50,000.
In partnership with the Jewish Funders Network (JFN) and the Partnership for Excellence in Jewish Education (PEJE), the AVI CHAI and Kohelet Foundations will match the first $6 million in donations to Jewish day schools throughout the United States with an additional $3 million.
JFN Director of Communications Avi Zollman said the program has helped support Jewish day schools nationwide.
“Since 2004, our matching grant programs for day schools and Jewish education have brought more than $51 million of new funding to the field,” he said, “and 385 donors have supported 232 schools and programs.”
The latest launch of MATCH, beginning Aug. 1, features a new rule that prohibits schools from going to parents for donations. Alumni parents, grandparents and community members are the target donors for this year’s program.
“There has been a recognition among funders that these schools are a community resource and that they need to be funded not just by parents but by members of the community as well,” Zollman added.
The last program was held in 2007, with $14.9 million raised by 200 donors, with an additional $4.9 million raised by JFN donors.
Miriam Prum Hess, director of Centers of Excellence in Day School Education at Builders of Jewish Education (BJE) in Los Angeles, said that BJE coaches participant schools on how to fundraise effectively.
“We are very excited about the launch,” she said, “We will work with schools and train them so they can meet the needs of schools and help them learn how to fundraise.”
She also said the program has experienced a lot of growth since its founding.
“In its first year, we had two schools in L.A. taking part in the program,” she said. “The second time, we did some training and coaching to help them develop strategies to achieve their goals; 15 schools got involved, and several were successful with reaching their targets with more than one donor.”
Applications will be accepted from Aug. 1, 2012, until Jan. 15, 2013. Applicants will be notified on a rolling basis until the entire amount has been allocated.