To Make a Vision a Reality... You Have to DREAM BIG
URJ Incubator Grants provide seed funding for innovative new projects designed to actively engage more people in Reform synagogue life. Grants of up to $5,000 were awarded to selected synagogues for fiscal year July 1, 2012 - June 30, 2013. The 2012 Request for Proposals (RFP) sought to stimulate creative thinking and provide program funding in three main categories:
Conversion (creating a culture that supports and encourages)
Teens (retention of post bnei mitzvah and their families)
Engagement in synagogue life (the broadest category, including recruitment of potential members, integration of recent members, and retention of current members)
We are not yet accepting applications for 2013. Please check back in the spring.
In our experience, the most successful initiatives as well as the most successful proposals demonstrate a good match between the special qualities, needs, and interests of their current members and the proposed initiative. They also demonstrate an awareness of a gap between the needs of the target audience and what the synagogue provides. Proposals with the greatest chance of success will do the best job of meeting the selection criteria.
URJ Members Applicants must be members of URJ congregations in good standing. If you have any question as to your congregations status with the Union, please contact your congregational contact.
Creativity/Innovation The selection committee will give first preference to programs that are new, i.e. are not being done elsewhere. Consideration is then given to programs that are similar to one that already exists (either as a pilot project within your own congregation or elsewhere), but with a significant new twist. Owing to our many smaller, more remote congregations, some consideration will be given to programs that exist elsewhere, but are new to your area.
Target Demographic General recruitment campaigns or programs designed to cast a wide net across several demographic groups are not good candidates for this grant. You must select a primary audience for your project and at most one secondary audience.
New Audience The application must demonstrate that the target audience is in some way underserved by or under-engaged in the synagogue.
Potential to Engage Is this project a good match between the synagogue and the needs of the target audience?
Replicable A project that is so specific to your circumstances or location that it could not be adapted in some way by another congregation would not be a good candidate for an Incubator Grant.