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Money for Values: Rethinking Synagogue Engagement and Finance

Phase 2: Online Webinars for Lay Leaders and Clergy

2018 saw the launch of our latest initiative and here you will find out all about it. What it’s about, who it’s for, how you can be involved as well as details of current and future workshops and a bank of resources

This Initiative includes:

  • Developing a culture of giving through fundraising and donors’/ members appreciation.
  • Mission driven Budget- practical ways to align your budget with you mission and sharing your financial stories with members.
  • Investigating ways to improve or even change the membership model* that will create both greater engagement and financial contribution.


As promised, we are now launching the next stage of the Initiative.

Between January and March we will be running a series of webinars, based on the 4 sessions we had at Chagigah. We are excited that Rabbi Lou Feldstein, an expert in synagogue finance, will be running 3 of these workshops. After attending these webinars you will have an opportunity to choose a specific topic for your community to develop together with Reform Judaism.

Book Here

We highly recommend you signing up for all 4 webinars, as they will give you a full and comprehensive picture of this fascinating topic, this will enable you to make an informed decision of the next steps for your community.

Webinar 1: Tuesday 15 or Wednesday 16 January, 8-9pm
Changing How We Think – Positioning Giving as a Pathway to Engagement; with Lou Feldstein

Membership fees: a fee for service or a charitable donation? Tzedaka, giving money to charity, is at the core of Judaism so how have we created a culture in our communities whereby giving to sustain our synagogues is not thought of as such? Celebrate the centenary of the Membership Fee model (yes, only 100 years!) by exploring what it is we need to change to rethink engagement and finance in our communities for the 21st Century. How can we reinstate a culture of giving and put relationships back at the core of what we do?

Webinar 2: Tuesday 22 or Wednesday 23 January, 8-9pm
The Power of Telling Your Financial Story with Lou Feldstein

Judaism has an incredible tradition of telling stories, of oral history that has spanned 5000 years. How can we use our heritage and this skill to articulate our financial stories? In this session we will identify what we need to know and what type of relationships we need to build in order to both develop our financial story and identify the storyteller.

Webinar 3: Tuesday 29 or Wednesday 30 January, 8-9pm
The battle of the Membership Fee Models with Amit Handelsman

Recent research shows that the 21st Century raised some serious challenges to the model we are so familiar with- the membership fee model. In this session we will learn about the other fee models out there and examine their pros and cons. Be inspired by case studies of communities who explored different ways of raising money through fees, invested in engaging with their members and building strong relationships with them.

Webinar 4: Tuesday 5 or Wednesday 6 February, 8-9pm
Putting Mission at the Heart of your Budgeting Process  with Lou Feldstein

A major way we can tell our financial story is through a budgeting system that reflects our values and our mission rather than one whose sole purpose is to break even. This practical session encourages communities to engage visionaries as well as accountants in the budgeting process ensuring your budget not only balances the books but is aligned with your communities values. Learn the tools to put theory into practice and discover how your budgeting process can increase engagement, transparency and a shared sense of accountability.

Book Here

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