Q. What criteria are applied in evaluating grant proposals?

A. Proposals will be assessed on the basis of how well the initiative:

  • demonstrates readiness to implement its proposal (evidence of professional and lay collaboration and engagement in planning the proposal)
  • evinces capacity to execute its plan (evidence of “buy-in” from cross-section of leaders and congregants)
  • deepens and intensifies adults' and children's engagement in Jewish living and learning on Shabbat and holidays (at least twice per month)
  • integrates all aspects of congregational programming ( tikkun olam , prayer, etc.) and constituencies (teens, empty-nesters, singles, etc.)
  • promotes collaboration among staff and lay leaders
  • aligns with or grows from a vision and/or strategic plan
  • allocates resources sustainably
  • aims for transformational impact rather than simply promoting attendance
  • represents an innovative approach for the congregation, for the context of the congregation (region or denomination), or for the field as a whole.
Q. What is the application process?

A. The LHIP: Congregational Education employs a two-stage process. The first stage is submission of a Letter of Intent, which must be downloaded and submitted by email by December 2, 2009. Congregations will be notified by January 7, 2010 if they have been selected to submit full proposals, which will be due by email by February 4, 2010. Grant recipients will be announced on or around March 10, 2010.

Q. What is the likelihood of receiving a grant from the LHIP: Congregational Education?

A. The grant process is highly competitive. Proposals matching the selection criteria most closely are most likely to be selected for funding. It is hoped that the process itself of assembling a team of staff and lay leaders to develop and articulate the proposal will benefit an applicant congregation.

Q. Can we apply for grant funding from more than one Legacy Heritage Innovation Project track (Congregational Education, Israel Engagement, or Music)?

A. No. In any given year, congregations may apply for funding only from one Legacy Heritage Innovation Project track.

Q. What are the program timeframes?

A. All grants will be made for the program period of August 1, 2010 through July 31, 2011.

Q. What are the requirements of the grants?

A. Each grantee congregation must send two representatives (preferably including at least one staff person) to a Legacy Heritage Innovation Project seminar in the New York metropolitan area Monday-Wednesday June 7-9, 2010. Synagogues are responsible for the entire cost of travel; all other costs are included.

  • A midyear report, including financial accounting, will be required in January 2011, and a year-end report with financial accounting in August 2011.
  • Grantees are required to document the project's progress regularly on a wiki webpage they will create. Training will be offered at the project seminar.
  • Grantee congregations are expected to have at least one representative participating in periodic distance learning conference calls and/or webinars throughout the grant year.
  • Grantee congregations must contribute $2,000 in matching funds towards the project; matching fund requirements in years two and three (if applicable) will be $3,000 and $5,000, respectively.
Q. How can the LHIP: Congregational Education funds be used?

A. Funding is intended to assist congregations in developing systemic change and sustainable, long-term impact, as opposed to supporting one-time or episodic programming which generate short-term effects. Grant funds are not intended to defray current synagogue operational expenses or hire temporary personnel unless the congregation provides a plan to sustain the position upon the grant's termination. Among the preferred potential use of grant funds are:

  • Compensation for guest instructors or scholars to conduct training and increase capacity within the congregation's professional and lay leadership;
  • Curricular development;
  • Stipends for professional development and/or training for existing staff or lay leadership to increase capacity within the congregation;
  • Supplemental compensation for staff members who undergo training and/or assume additional responsibilities as a result of the funded initiative;
  • Development of reusable resources/supplies Note: grant funds may not be used for food or refreshments.
Q. How will the grant funds be disbursed?

A. Grant funds will disbursed over the course of the year according to the following schedule: 40% in August 2010, 40% in February 2011 upon submission of a satisfactory midyear report, and 20% upon submission of a satisfactory final report in June 2011.

Q. What is the synagogue required to do once it receives notification of a LHIP: Congregational Education grant?

A. Synagogues will be sent a Letter of Agreement delineating the obligations of the synagogue and the conditions which must be met for receipt of grant funds. Synagogues must sign and return the Letter of Agreement before any funds will be released.

Q. Are there requirements for marketing and publicity?

A. All LHIP: Congregational Education publicity materials must include an acknowledgment of the grant printed in accordance with the Foundation's logo guidelines. Each program must be publicized as a LHIP: Congregational Education program funded in part by Legacy Heritage Fund.

Q. Whom should we contact if we have additional questions?

A. Elana Kermaier, Legacy Heritage Fund 212-578-8190x109 / EKermaier@lhfl.net

©2009 Legacy Heritage Fund