In 2013, Jim Joseph Foundation convened more than a dozen local and national funders of Jewish teen programming for a series of discussions on expanding teen involvement in Jewish life. The funders learned together and commissioned groundbreaking research—and ultimately began to design responsive local teen engagement initiatives in communities across the country.

This group evolved into a robust, collaborative community: The Jewish Teen Education & Engagement Funder Collaborative. This innovative learning and sharing network has created an environment that fosters risk-taking, experimentation and ongoing reflection. Funders, including Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Greater Boston, serve as resources and thought partners to their practitioner colleagues who are at different points in the process of launching, growing and refining their initiatives. Members share a commitment to transparency, with the goal of increasing knowledge and contributing tools to help advance the entire Jewish teen engagement field. The Funder Collaborative also shares its internal process and findings with others who may choose to embark on their own co-funding endeavor.

The Funder Collaborative is an unprecedented endeavor in which local and national funders collaborate in the work of education, relationship-building and co-investment in multi-faceted local Jewish teen education and engagement initiatives. We believe the work of the Funder Collaborative and the teen initiatives underway in each of the communities can actively build the field of Jewish teen engagement. We strive to improve the existing landscape by driving deep change in local communities to catalyze a broader impact. Through the work of the Funder Collaborative and participating communities, new programs are being incubated, existing program providers are being incentivized to expand or deepen their work, youth professionals are receiving serious professional development and all are taking evaluation seriously. It is part of our mission to share all that we learn so that others may bring successful strategies to scale.

CJP and the Jewish Teen Initiative at CJP are proud Funder Collaborative partners.