The Hadassah Foundation is an investor in social change to bring about gender equity in the United States and Israel. We work to improve the status, health and well-being of all who identify as women and girls; bring their contributions, issues and needs from the margins to the center of Jewish concern; and encourage and facilitate their active participation in decision-making and leadership in all spheres of life.
In late 2022, recognizing that organizations need different types of support at different stages in their development, we revamped our grantmaking structure. While previously we awarded in two grantmaking cycles per year, one for Israeli organizations and one for U.S. organizations, we now award grants in four categories: Visionary Partner, Core, Spark, and Discretionary. To learn more about our grant structure and categories view our grants overview.
Photo courtesy of Moving Traditions
Visionary Partner grants exemplify our values of building partnerships and embodying trust-based philanthropy. These are five-year unrestricted grants of $130,000 for mission-aligned organizations with strong track records as previous grantees.
Hadassah Foundation’s 2023 Visionary Partner is Moving Traditions, an organization that emboldens Jewish youth to thrive through the pursuit of personal wellbeing (shleimut), caring relationships (hesed), and a Jewish and feminist vision of equity and justice (tzedek). It combines positive psychology with Jewish values and partners with Jewish institutions across North America to engage Jewish teens, families, and communities. Learn more here.
In 2022, we awarded our inaugural Visionary Partner grants to Jewish Women International (JWI) and WePower. Based in the U.S., JWI works to empower women and girls – of every race, culture, ability, gender identity, and sexual orientation – by ensuring and protecting their safety, building access to long-term economic security, and lifting and mentoring women leaders. WePower, a non-partisan Israeli NGO, helps women to advance to top level decision-making and elected positions, thus propelling social change and leading to a more equal and just civil society.
2023 Core Grants
Core Grants support leading organizations and programs that promote gender equity in Israel or the U.S. Grants are for $80,000 awarded over a three-year grant cycle.
Forum Dvorah is the only organization in Israel focusing on gender equality in key decision-making positions in the fields of national security and foreign policy. It manages a network of over 200 leading women in Israel in these fields and supports the next generation of leadership among young women.
The Gender Equity in Hiring Project challenges gender bias in hiring and employment processes in Jewish organizational life, to help women rise into positions of leadership. It equips Jewish organizations with knowledge and support as they develop the mindset, skills, and strategies necessary to support the Jewish community as they advocate for and experiment with organizational change and culture shifts.
Israel Women’s Network (IWN) has been advancing gender equality and women’s rights in Israel for more than 38 years. Alongside its efforts to eradicate gender-based violence and to promote gender equality awareness and education in Israeli society, the IWN promotes gender equality in the workplace, in public spaces, and in government allocations of resources. The Foundation’s grant to IWN will cover efforts to increase awareness of women’s rights in the workplace.
Itach Ma’aki: Women Lawyers for Social Justice is an Israeli advocacy organization working to advance the status of women in Israeli public and private life. From workplaces to local municipalities to governmental bodies and the home, it is committed to furthering women’s legal rights, socio-economic advancement and representation. Founded in 2001, it works across a plethora of communities focusing on Israel’s most marginalized women, including Bedouin women, haredi women and women living in Israel’s economic and geographical periphery.
QueenB was founded in 2016 with the aim of increasing the representation of Israeli women in the high-tech industry, in order to promote gender equality and equal employment opportunities. QueenB operates on two main tracks: offering after-school programming classes for teenage girls and creating a community of female students in the fields of computer science and engineering. (Photo at top of page is courtesy of QueenB)
2023 Spark Grants
These grants are awarded to organizations that are in the start-up or early stages of development, display innovation and are addressing a gap in the field of gender equity. Spark Grants allow for increased risk-taking and greater flexibility in the Foundation’s ability to support newer organizations that are meeting pressing and emergent issues. Grants are for $20,000 awarded over an 18-month cycle. Learn more about our 2023 Spark grants here.
- ASLI: Israel White Ribbon Organization, which works to engage men and boys in the effort to eliminate violence towards women in both public and private spheres. ASLI is the only men-led and men-oriented organization in Israel working to prevent violence towards women.
- The Friendship League of Culture and Sports (Israel), which empowers women and girls from diverse cultural, ethnic and religious communities in Israel by engaging them in the highly participatory and enjoyable game of catchball. (This grant is underwritten by the Julie Morris Ner Tamid Fund, which was established earlier this year in memory of past board chair Julie Morris.)
- Kamochah (United States), which aims to normalize the presence and experiences of Black Orthodox Jews in all sectors of Jewish communal life, including camps, schools, and synagogues. In addition, it celebrates the richness of Black Jews’ racial heritage while holding fast to Torah observance.
2023 Discretionary Grants
These are grants distributed throughout the year in response to time-sensitive activities and urgent needs.
Moving Traditions emboldens Jewish youth to thrive through the pursuit of personal wellbeing, caring relationships, and a Jewish and feminist vision of equity and justice. Funds support efforts to help teens engage with reproductive rights work in response to the June 2022 reversal of Roe v. Wade.
Project Kesher Israel advocates on behalf of the needs of the Russian-speaking community in Israel and provides direct services to women who experience gender-based violence, need legal assistance with their personal status or obtaining a Jewish divorce, require eldercare services, or aim to improve their financial literacy. Funds support increased services, including mental health, legal support, and education for women Ukrainian and Russian refugees and immigrants in Israel.
2022 Israel Grants
These were grants to leading Israel-based organizations and programs that promote gender equity in Israel and were $70,000 awarded over two years.
Adva Center: A leading Israeli progressive think-tank that monitors social and economic developments and their impact on Israel’s diverse populations. Funds support their gender programming, including research, establishing gender budgeting throughout Israel, and courses and lectures.
Economic Empowerment for Women: EEW promotes the economic empowerment of women by providing them with the knowledge and tools to create their own businesses and become financially independent. Funds are for general operating support, which go toward EEW’s many programs including: empowerment training, business forums, personal consultations, and lectures.
Merchavim: Israel citizens of different backgrounds get to know each other, appreciate diversity, create joint communities and organizations, and promote a fairer society at Merchavim. Funds support the M’Nehigot (“Leadership”) initiative, which helps Arab women teachers obtain sought after leadership and teaching positions in Jewish schools throughout Israel.
The Ruth and Emanuel Rackman Center: Operating at Bar-Ilan University, the Rackman Center provides legal representation, academic expertise, and policy recommendations to improve the status of women in Israel’s family laws and policies. Funds support Rackman’s advocacy initiatives as well as their pro-bono legal support and counseling for women who lack the resources and information they need to navigate Israel’s court systems.
WePower: WePower is also a Visionary Partner (details above). Funds go toward WePower’s general operating costs, helping further their many initiatives including: their advocacy and education on the gender gap in leadership, locating and training potential women government officials, and fostering growth and connections among women in decision-making positions.
Past Israel Grantees
A Step Forward
Al Zahraa Organization for Women
Association of Rape Crisis Centers
Center for Jewish Arab Economic Development
Center for Women’s Justice
Citizens’ Accord Forum Between Jews and Arabs
The Falk Institute
The Haifa Battered Women’s Hotline
Hebrew University NCJW Research Institute for Innovation in Education
Israel Association for the Advancement of Women’s Health
Israel Religious Action Center
Israel Women’s Network
Jerusalem Intercultural Center
Kav LaOved—Worker’s Hotline
Koret Israel Economic Development Funds
Negev Institute for Strategies of Peace and Development
Project Kesher Israel
Rabbis for Human Rights
Shatil—New Israel Fund
The Taub Center
Tel Aviv University Law School
Theatre Company Jerusalem
The Tmura Center
Turning the Tables
Van Leer Institute, The Center for the Advancement of Women in the Public Sphere
Women Against Violence
Women of the Wall
Workers’ Advice Center—Ma’an
Past United States Grantees
AVODAH: The Jewish Service Corps
Challah for Hunger
District of Columbia JCC
Edith and Carl Marks JCH of Bensonhurst
F.E.G.S. Long Island Division
Hebrew Free Loan Society, New York City
Jewish Community Relations Council of NY
Jewish Family & Life
Jewish Family Service of San Diego
Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago
Jewish Free Loan Association, Los Angeles
Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance
Jewish Theological Seminary
Joseph Slifka Center for Jewish Life at Yale
Lookstein Virtual Jewish Academy
Ohio State University Hillel
Shalom Bayit (The Tides Center)
Shalom Hartman Institute of North America
Shalom Task Force
St. Louis JCC/Nishmah
Union for Reform Judaism
Women’s Sports Foundation
COVID-19 Response Grants (2020-2021)
With a dramatic increase in calls to Israel’s domestic abuse hotlines since the COVID-19 pandemic took hold, the Hadassah Foundation quickly launched a COVID-19 Response Fund. The selected grant recipients were:
Association of Rape Crisis Centers: The convener of Israel’s rape crisis centers that advocates on behalf of policies that promote women’s safety and support survivors of gender-based violence.
Israel Women’s Network: An organization focused on women’s equality that is lobbying the new Knesset and national government administration to implement needed domestic violence reforms.
Kayan: A feminist movement that advances the status and protects the rights of Arab women in Israel, is translating important domestic violence information into Arabic, expanding their culturally responsive helpline, and advising local Arab-women leaders on the ways to respond to COVID-19 and the domestic violence crisis.
Phase 2: Jewish Women’s Collective Response Fund
The Jewish Women’s Collective Response Fund, convened and facilitated by The Hadassah Foundation, was comprised of five women’s funds – Greater Miami Jewish Federation Women’s Amutot Initiative, Israel Lions of Judah, Jewish Women’s Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago, Jewish Women’s Fund of Atlanta, and The Hadassah Foundation. The Collective Response Fund was created to provide sorely needed financial resources during this pandemic to Israeli nonprofit organizations that support survivors of domestic violence.
Tahel: The Crisis Center for Religious Women and Children: With 85 percent of its clientele coming from the Haredi population, Tahel provides emotional support, advice, and referrals for women and children in times of crisis.
Women’s Spirit: Providing tools, knowledge, and support for the economic independence and personal development of women survivors of violence.
MASLAN: The Negev’s Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Support Center: One of nine crisis centers in Israel, offers emergency services and counseling for people located throughout the Negev region.