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John Diamond, CEO of the Jewish Foundation of Manitoba

Jewish Foundation of Manitoba Distributes Almost $300,000 in Emergency Relief Funding to 26 Manitoba Based Jewish Organizations and Four of Wpg's Front Line Charities

by Rhonda Spivak, May 18, 2020

Over the past few weeks, the Jewish Foundation of Manitoba (JFM) has distributed almost $300,000 in emergency relief funding due to the coronavirus pandemic to 26 Manitoba based Jewish Organizations as well as 4 of Winnipeg's front-line charities (Winnipeg Harvest, Siloam Mission, Agape Table, and Main Street Project). About $200,000 was distributed to the 26 Manitoba based Jewish organizations, and about $100,0000 was distributed to the 4 front line Winnipeg charities. This has been done without the need for these organizations having to undergo an application process to receive the funding.


When asked why the JFM chose the approach of distributing money without first requiring applications from the organizations, John Diamond, CEO of the Jewish Foundation of Manitoba replied in an email, "All decisions made by the JFM are guided by our mission, vision, and values. Based on those principals, we recognize that at a time of economic downturn, most of the organizations would benefit from some basic level of funding to sustain them. We also decided that it would be advisable for the first step in our plan for support to forego an application process because we recognize that many organizations have been forced to reduce staff and that most staff are working remotely and under limitations." 


Diamond also noted, "It is the position of the Jewish Foundation of Manitoba's Board of Directors that, in line with the mission and vision of the Jewish Foundation of Manitoba, it is our responsibility to support all of the Jewish organizations that make our community so unique and vibrant. The JFM felt it imperative to implement a process that would contribute to those 26 Manitoba based Jewish organizations in hopes of providing some relief as programming and revenue streams shut down. To achieve this, a proposal was passed by the Board of Directors to redirect funds typically allocated for the JFM spring granting cycle. These funds would now go toward the support of our community in the form of emergency relief funding."


When asked what the formula the JFM used across the board to distribute the funding Diamond  responded that "To distribute to our 26 Manitoba based Jewish Organizations, five levels of funding were established based on the operating budgets of each organization."  


The JFM will also be distributing an additional $400,000 for emergency relief funding during the pandemic and  organizations will have to apply for this funding. As Diamond indicated, "We know this is not the end of hardships to be endured by our Jewish organizations. Therefore in the coming weeks, more information will be provided to them regarding opportunities to apply for additional relief funding. Our Grants Committee is currently developing the process and criteria for organizations to apply. 


"To ensure we are implementing processes that will achieve the most impact, the JFM is in constant contact with our Jewish organizations. This includes the Jewish Federation of Winnipeg. As both organizations endeavor to serve the community during this time of need, it will be through our shared information and consistent communication that support is administered where it is needed most."


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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

Opinions expressed in letters to the editor or articles by contributing writers are not necessarily endorsed by Winnipeg Jewish Review.