Denver, CO – For the second year in a row, MazelTot.org: Connecting Young Families to Jewish Life, an initiative of Rose Community Foundation, has been named one of the nation’s 50 most innovative Jewish nonprofit projects in the ’13-’14 Slingshot Guide, a resource guide for Jewish innovation. MazelTot.org was selected from among hundreds of applicants for its unique approach and effectiveness in connecting young families to Jewish life in Greater Denver and Boulder, in partnership with 36 local Jewish organizations.
The ’13-’14 Slingshot Guide evaluators call MazelTot.org a “trailblazer” and continue to applaud its dedication to accessible communal life and practice. MazelTot.org is one of only 50 organizations selected by an independent panel of professionals for inclusion in Slingshot.
“MazelTot.org is proud to be featured in the Slingshot Guide for a second year in a row,” says MazelTot.org Coordinator Perri Klein. “We are thrilled to be recognized among the hundreds of innovative Jewish organizations nationwide.”
Slingshot is distributed to 7,500 funders, foundation professionals and organizational leaders annually. Will Schneider, executive director of Slingshot, adds, “The groundbreaking organizations that we highlight in the ’13-’14 Slingshot Guide are game-changers in the realms of community engagement, social justice impact, and religious and spiritual life. The Slingshot Guide is not just a book listing organizations doing interesting things; it’s a resource relied upon by doers and donors alike.” Since its inception, Slingshot has highlighted 191 innovative Jewish organizations.
Launched in September 2009 by Rose Community Foundation, MazelTot.org seeks to connect families with children prenatal through preschool to local Jewish life and to one another. At MazelTot.org, parents can explore programs and events for families offered by 36 Jewish organizations throughout Greater Denver and Boulder. They can also create a free account and redeem big discounts (funded by grants) to help lower the cost of trying out new Jewish experiences. Paul Gillis, The Oreg Foundation and The Slingshot Fund together with Rose Community Foundation fund the cost of MazeltTot.org.
In June 2013, MazelTot.org began the Parent Connector Project with parent volunteers who help families connect and build community online and in their neighborhoods. One Slingshot evaluator wrote, “As a new parent, I spend countless hours searching online for Jewish opportunities available to my family – I wish MazelTot.org existed in my community.”
To date, more than 1,900 families have signed up for MazelTot.org and an independent evaluation shows that it is making an impact and engaging families in Jewish life. Since joining, 79 percent of families have attended at least one local Jewish organization that was new to them, and 71 percent say their family’s Jewish life is growing at home.
About Rose Community Foundation
Rose Community Foundation uses leadership, grantmaking and donor engagement to invest in strategic and innovative solutions to enduring problems and emerging issues. The Foundation has granted nearly $200 million since it was founded in 1995. MazelTot.org is an initiative of Rose Community Foundation. For more information, visit rcfdenver.org.
About the Slingshot Guide
The Slingshot Guide, now in its ninth year, was created by a team of young funders as a guidebook to help funders of all ages diversify their giving portfolios to include the most innovative and effective organizations, programs and projects in North America. Slingshot contains information about each organization’s origin, mission, strategy, impact and budget, as well as details about its unique character. The Slingshot Guide has proven to be a catalyst for next generation funding and offers a telling snapshot of shifting trends in North America’s Jewish community – and how nonprofits are meeting new needs and reaching new audiences. The book, published annually, is available in hard copy and as a free download at slingshotfund.org.