by Shiela Steinman Wallace
The Jewish Community of Louisville’s Young Adult Division is on the move. After raising $47,000 for the 2010 JCL Annual Campaign at the YAD Main Campaign Event in November, which represented a 40 percent increase over the same cards the previous year, the division won the praise and respect of donors across the community.
Now they’ve scheduled a YAD Telethon on January 31 to keep the momentum going and to respond to the challenge issued by Bill Yarmuth at the Major Gifts Dinner in December.
At the Major Gifts Dinner, Yarmuth clearly articulated this appreciation and support for YAD. The younger adults are taking the lead in shaping the Jewish Community of Louisville, he said. They’re serving on the Board and on committees, sharing their ideas and concerns and providing leadership.
In recognition of their emerging leadership, and to encourage the younger adults to continue to support their own efforts with the funding necessary to enact the changes they are designing, Yarmuth issued a two-part challenge.
The first part of the challenge is directed specifically to YAD. Yarmuth offered to match YAD’s additional fundraising efforts, pledging an additional $50,000 above his already generous commitment to the 2010 Annual Campaign, if YAD doubles the $47,000 they raised at their Main Campaign Event.
He directed the second part of his challenge to the other major donors in the room, inviting them to add to his challenge. For every penny per dollar other donors contribute to this challenge, the potential match for YAD increases by $500.
“When Bill made his most generous donation to the 2010 annual campaign, and then offered another $50,000 if the YAD division doubled the sum we raised at our kickoff event, I was speechless,” said YAD co-chair Jennifer Tuvlin. “My first thought was, can we do it? And then I immediately thought of the programs and improvements the JCL could accomplish with another $100,000 and I realized of course we could do it.
“The Yachad Kadima and formation of the JCL happened in large part because younger adults in our community asked for change,” she continued. “Now is our opportunity to prove to the Louisville Jewish community that we are ready to ‘put our money where our mouth is’.”
YAD Co-Chair Mike Salamon enthusiastically agreed, adding, “Bill Yarmuth’s matching challenge grant adds an interesting and exciting ‘twist’ to JCL’s Annual Campaign. The matching concept should hopefully inspire everyone to consider the impact each dollar pledged has.”
“Bill’s pledge ignited the evening,” Tuvlin continued. “There were already so many incredibly generous donations but once he explained the YAD challenge, donors who had already given raised their contributions to match what we, the YAD division, can raise.
“We’ve got a lot of work to do,” she concluded, “which is why Mike and I are working hard with some YAD volunteers to organize a YAD telethon on January 31, before Super Sunday. An eager group has already volunteered to make calls, but, of course, we need more help and would welcome all additional volunteers. We will canvass the YAD community striving to raise at lease another $47,000.”
YAD includes all members of the Jewish community age 45 and under. The telethon will take place at JCL offices on the second floor of Shalom Tower from 10 a.m.-noon.
To make your pledge to JCL’s 2010 Annual Campaign or to be a volunteer caller for the January 31 telethon, please contact Tzivia at the JCL office, 618-5308 or firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also pledge or volunteer online at www.jewishlouisville.org.