Denver, CO – MazelTot, an initiative of Rose Community Foundation has been named one of the nation’s 50 most innovative Jewish nonprofit projects in Slingshot ’12-‘13, a resource guide for Jewish innovation. MazelTot was selected for this list because it effectively connects young families to Jewish Life in Greater Denver and Boulder by welcoming new parents into Jewish communities and making it easy for them to explore their Jewish options online.
Slingshot organizations grapple with concerns in Jewish life such as identity, community, social justice and tradition, each with different missions, perspectives and strategies. The Slingshot resource guide is distributed to 7,500 funders, foundation professionals and organizational leaders annually, in addition to tens of thousands of online downloads. Readers use Slingshot to identify the most inspiring and trail blazing organizations, projects and programs in the North American Jewish community today. Since its inception, Slingshot has highlighted 173 innovative Jewish organizations in North America.
“Slingshot is a celebration of those Jewish organizations and projects successfully breathing new energy into Jewish life,” says Julie Finkelstein, program director of Slingshot. Slingshot organizations are selected from among hundreds of nominees based on their strength in four areas: innovation, impact, leadership, and organizational efficiency. MazelTot was chosen for the first time this year by an independent panel of 48 foundation professionals from across North America. This is the third consecutive year that a Rose Community Foundation project has been included in Slingshot.
Launched in September 2009, MazelTot is a Rose Community Foundation initiative to connect families with young children to local Jewish life and to one another. At mazeltot.org, families can explore programs and events for the prenatal through preschool crowd offered by 35 Jewish organizations throughout greater Denver and Boulder. Parents can also create a free account and redeem discounts to help lower the cost of trying out new Jewish experiences.
“MazelTot’s 35 partner organizations reflect the full spectrum of Jewish life in our community,” says Perri Klein, MazelTot’s family networker. “They offer something for everyone and it is because of these organizations’ creativity and commitment to collaboration that MazelTot has been given this great recognition.”
To date, more than 1,600 families have registered for MazelTot. Since signing up, 86 percent of families say their participation at Jewish organizations is increasing. Three quarters of families have attended at least one organization that was new to them, and 76% say their family’s Jewish life is growing at home. “We believe early childhood is one of the best times not only to engage children in Jewish life, but to support a whole family in taking the next steps on their Jewish journey,” explains Sarah Indyk who oversees MazelTot at Rose Community Foundation. “We are tremendously grateful to Slingshot for their endorsement of our community’s work.”
Slingshot ’12-’13 was released on November 5, 2012. Over 250 nonprofit leaders, foundation professionals and funders of all ages will engage in candid conversations about philanthropy and innovation in the Jewish community on May 6, 2013 in New York City at the annual Slingshot Day.
About Rose Community Foundation
Rose Community Foundation supports efforts to improve the quality of life throughout the Greater Denver community through its endowed grantmaking programs, and by advising and assisting donors who wish to make thoughtful charitable investments to better the community. The Foundation has granted more than $187 million since it was founded in 1995. For more information, visit rcfdenver.org.
Slingshot was created by a team of young funders as a guidebook to help funders of all ages diversify their giving portfolios with the most innovative and effective organizations and programs in North America. This guide contains information about each organization’s origin, mission, strategy, impact and budget, as well as details about its unique character. Now in its eighth edition, Slingshot has proven to be a catalyst for next generation funding and offers a telling snapshot of shifting trends in North America’s Jewish community. The book, published annually, is available for free in hard copy and as a download at slingshotfund.org.