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Signature Initiatives

As a dynamic and versatile organization, we are adapting to the changing needs and desires of our constituents and donors. We wish to make philanthropic dreams become a reality and we work with our donors to ensure that individual special interests are matched with the needs of our community through Signature Giving opportunities. Jewish tradition teaches that one of our key duties is to make the world a better place for future generations.

This year's six opportunities are:

Dror Israel Kibbutz, Akko

Federation is strengthening our connection to Israel through a partnership with Dror Israel’s kibbutz in Akko. Dror Israel’s work is built on Herzl’s vision to actualize Zionist ideals in Israeli society, and rests strongly on a model of youth empowerment. The fifty members of the Akko Kibbutz are part of a nation-wide movement of educators working on fifteen kibbutzim throughout Israel.

These young Israelis run over twenty educational programs in Akko and the surrounding cities, and serve over 3,000 children and teens each year. Kibbutz programs further the mission of Dror Israel by:

Programs run by Dror Israel educators living at the Akko Kibbutz include:

East Bay International Jewish Film Festival

The East Bay International Jewish Film Festival is the largest Jewish cultural event in the Contra Costa/Tri-Valley region of the Bay Area. Its feature films, shorts and documentaries enable our community to explore the richness of our Jewish identity and history.

Over the course of 10 days (March 7-13; March 21-23), the festival will screen films from Argentina, Australia, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Israel, Macedonia, Poland and the US. In 2014, the festival expects nearly 10,000 festival-goers to attend during its 10-day run. Over 45 different films, including comedies, dramas, mysteries, documentaries and shorts will be screened. In addition, the Federation also hosts “between festivals” screenings that take place in the spring and feature repeat performances of many of the films.

Because of The East Bay International Jewish Film Festival, the Federation is able to:

Holocaust Survivor Services

It is of paramount importance at the Federation to provide care and support for vulnerable populations in our community, chief among them Holocaust survivors.

Through Federation’s support of the Jewish Family & Children’s Services of the East Bay (JFCS/East Bay) Holocaust Survivor Services, 270 Holocaust survivors living in Alameda and Contra Costa counties receive external support for their vital needs.

Because of the Federation’s sponsorship of the Holocaust Survivor Services, survivors in the East Bay receive:


The Federation’s NextGen Signature Initiative focuses on engaging the next generation of East Bay Jewish leaders through the Taglit-Birthright Israel program. Taglit-Birthright Israel invites 18-26 year-old Jews on a free 10-day trip to Israel. “Taglit” in Hebrew means discovery, which is the essence of the whole program. Our Birthright participants discover Israel and its peoples; they discover their own connections to Jewish values and tradition; and they discover a way to connect to the Jewish community back in the East Bay.

This past year, 76 East Bay young adults went to Israel with Taglit-Birthright on dedicated East Bay buses, bringing the total number of Federation supported participants up to 120. Through the Taglit-Birthright Israel program, the Federation’s NexGen initiative provides:

PJ Library®

Federation is creating opportunities for families with young children to connect to the East Bay Jewish community through our award-winning PJ Library® initiative. With your support, PJ Library® distributes age-appropriate Jewish books and music monthly to children from six months through seven years — entirely free of charge.

This year there are 2,400 children enrolled in PJ Library®, founded by the Massachusetts-based Harold Grinspoon Foundation and supported by the Bay Area’s Jim Joseph Foundation, as well as generous East Bay donors.

In addition to nurturing Jewish families with the gift of books, the PJ Library® initiative offers:

Learn more…

Youth Engagement

The Federation involves young East Bay residents in Jewish life, inviting them to take ownership of and shape their own Jewish communities. The initiative has three core programs:

Through the Federation’s Youth Engagement Initiative, young Jews in the East Bay: