18 August 2023
Wildfires continue to wreak havoc on communities in Maui. Federation and our Jewish communal partners are working to support those in need. We are deeply grateful to those who have given generously to Federation’s Hawaii Wildfire Relief Fund – all gifts will directly support those in need as they rebuild and recover. If you are able, please donate here.
In Greater Washington, our children have the benefit of a Jewish community that cares deeply for their well-being, their education, and their future. Through a wide range of programs and organizations that engage families with young children in Jewish life, we broaden opportunities that help forge Jewish identity, create a sense of belonging and community, and help children and families form lifelong bonds with others like them at this critical life stage.
Central to this are the many Jewish preschool and early childhood programs available throughout DC, MD, and Northern VA. Visit our resource page to find more about these wonderful programs and other offerings for parents.
With the help of generous donors like you, Federation has also invested nearly $1 million to support initiatives that help children and families provide a strong foundation for growing and shaping their personal and Jewish journeys. We are partnering with 16 JCCs, synagogues, and day schools in our community to create innovative opportunities for families with young children, including through:
- JFamily Ambassadors – Through this initiative, Federation-funded parent connectors organize programs at our three local JCCs and locations across the region. Over the past year, they have hosted a combined 1,250 families at neighborhood-based events, including 236 families making their first connection to the Jewish community as parents.
- PJ Library® – This beloved program is implemented locally by Federation, and funded by Federation, the Harold Grinspoon Foundation, and generous donors. Together, we send 100,000 free books annually to more than 6,500 local families and 8,300 children.
- Focusing on families with children ages 0-3 – In a post-pandemic environment, Federation and our partners are helping families gather, transmit Jewish values, and shape their identities, including through offerings focused on Jewish holidays and social justice.
Of course, Greater Washington’s Jewish offerings for families continue beyond early childhood. Our community is home to great day schools, religious and Hebrew schools, youth groups, and summer camps, among many other places for learning and growth, and our collective, vibrant future depends on our ability to provide access to and support for them.
Federation is proud to support and promote the many opportunities for families and children to access values-based, developmentally appropriate, hands-on experiences that develop a sense of responsibility to care for each other and, in turn, build a stronger Jewish community.
As we prepare to welcome the Jewish New Year, now is a wonderful time to explore all the offerings available across DC, MD, and Northern VA for families and children. If you or others in your network are looking for ways to engage with Jewish life this year, I encourage you to share this message with them.
Thank you for your support as we work together to build a vibrant future for ourselves and generations to come.