Dream Big: Apply Now for a WRJ Incubator Grant!

December 29, 2015Rozan Anderson

Does your sisterhood have an innovative programming idea that would be fabulous, but you fall short of the financial resources necessary to pull it off successfully? Women of Reform Judaism is here to provide the opportunity for you and your sisterhood to dream big, give it your all, and make it a reality. 

New this year, WRJ Incubator Grants are designed to provide seed funding to inspire and enable “outside the box” programs and provide new ideas for all WRJ sisterhoods and Districts.

What types of programs are we looking to fund?

Creative, inspiring, and innovative programs that:

  • Create and nurture caring communities;
  • Promote Reform Jewish values;
  • Cultivate spiritual or personal growth;
  • Give more women the opportunity to perform tikkun olam, repair the world; and   
  • Are replicable by other sisterhoods and WRJ Districts.

Who may apply?

Any sisterhood (in North America, Israel, or around the world) in good standing with WRJ and its WRJ District. If you haven’t already done so, please get the word out to leaders in your sisterhood. Can you imagine what an opportunity like this can mean for your sisterhood and others? 

How much funding are we talking about?

Each grant may be used to fund program expenses from $500 to $5,000 USD. This can be for a one-time project or for an ongoing initiative, though the grant will only be given once.  

How many grants will be available?

WRJ has budgeted $20,000 for the overall Incubator Grants program. The WRJ Incubator Grants Committee will determine how many we fund and the dollar amounts for each based on the applications we receive. We’d love to distribute all of it!

What’s the timing for these grants?

Applications are available now online and are due by Tuesday, February 9, 2016. We expect to announce grant recipients in April 2016, with funds released as soon after as necessary for each project. Some projects may begin immediately and others not until after the summer or next fall. We hope that sisterhoods whose projects are funded will be able to share their progress, whatever that may be, at WRJ District Conventions in 2016 and the WRJ Fried Leadership Conference 2017, March 3-5 in Charleston, SC.

What other things might you be thinking about in preparing your application?

You should plan to submit the budget for your whole project, so that the committee can evaluate the overall financial scope and the ways in which a grant might make the biggest difference.

If you plan to partner with other congregational groups or community organizations, you should include the nature of their involvement in your application, as well as if you are seeking any other funding for your program.

In addition, we’d like you to give some thought as to how you will evaluate the success of your program, either as it progresses or at its conclusion.

Have more questions or concerns?

Please feel free to contact WRJ Program & Communications Associate Renata Gerecke.

The Incubator Grants Committee and I can’t wait to see your ideas! We look forward to helping you realize those big, big dreams and share them with the rest of us!

Rozan Anderson is a Women of Reform Judaism board member & chair of its Incubator Grants committee.

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