High Holiday Beginners Service Grant Opportunity

NJOP Announces $500 Stipends for Synagogues/Jewish Centers Running NJOP’s High Holiday Beginners Service

Thanks to the generosity of Sylvia Freyer and the Freyer Family Foundation, NJOP will be awarding grants of up to $500 each to 20 locations  to serve as seed money to help launch, promote and facilitate a High Holiday Beginners Service (HHBS). If your synagogue or Jewish organization has not run a HHBS during the past five years (or longer), we encourage you to apply for the stipend and offer an exciting and dynamic Beginners Service on one or both days of Rosh Hashana or on Yom Kippur (Kol Nidrei eve and Yom Kippur day) that will appeal to, and be open to, the broader Jewish community.

If your application is accepted, NJOP will offer you up to $500 for promotional expenses.

To apply, please click here (Applications accepted beginning July 17, 2017. Notification begins August 8, 2017)

How can you spend the $500?

The $500 stipend is a reimbursement. In order to receive a check from NJOP, receipts/invoices are required for the exact amount spent (up to $500). This stipend is meant to be used for recruiting and engaging people to attend your High Holiday Beginners Service. The ideal audience for the NJOP-sponsored High Holiday Beginners Service consists of people who either do not have plans to attend any service or who are looking for a more meaningful High Holiday experience, as opposed to synagogue members opting for a different style service. The money may not be used to subsidize people’s attendance (if you intend to charge for admission), buy siddurim or machzorim, sponsor Kiddush or the like. If executed properly, your synagogue/organization will not only discover how valuable such a service is for its intended audience, but also how offering this type of programming can benefit your synagogue/organization by attracting new members or engaging dormant members.

How can you apply?

In order for an application to be considered, in addition to the High Holiday Beginners Service, the location must agree to:

1. Participate in NJOP’s Read Hebrew America and Canada (RHA/C) campaign by offering one of NJOP’s Hebrew Reading Crash Courses. NJOP’s Hebrew reading campaign takes place: from October 15 through December 11, 2017.

Your application will not be accepted without pre-registration for RHA/C. To learn more about RHA/C, please click here. To register for RHA/C, please call NJOP at 888.44.HEBRE(W) (444-3273) or fill out the online form here.

2. Participate in a conference call (time to be determined later) with representatives of other locations selected for this stipend. On this conference call we will discuss best practices and effective strategies to increase the potential reach of your HHBS. The conference call should not run longer than 60 minutes.

3. Make an effort to conduct a Shabbat Beginners Service, at least monthly if possible. It’s a great way to invite your HHBS participants back to a wonderful follow-up program.

4. Share with NJOP the names and contact information of the participants in your High Holiday Beginners Service and answer the post-event evaluation form regarding the program, its successes, and its impact on participants. We strongly encourage you to solicit advanced reservations, when possible.

The criteria that will be used for selection will be:

>A clear description of your strategies (see above) to reach out to marginally-affiliated members and unaffiliated Jews in your community. Included in this should be your plans to promote this program to reach a broad range of Jews in your community and your strategy to attract them back to other follow-up programs.

>Your agreement to partner with NJOP on Read Hebrew America and Canada and make efforts to establish a Shabbat Beginners Service.

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis, so return your completed application as soon as possible.