Press Releases
Four Finalists Compete in Online Voting
June 22nd, 2017

(June 22, 2017) New York, NY…Encouraging the New York Jewish community to help “shape your Jewish New York,” UJA-Federation has launched a grant-making contest where the community will vote for the recipient of a $250,000 award.

The contest, called “Big Idea,” was launched on May 16 and asked New York non-profits to submit an idea designed to transform how we can make our Jewish community more welcoming and inclusive. 32 organizations submitted proposals and a committee narrowed the finalists down to four. Voting opens June 20 and will run until June 30 at

The contest will kick-off with a Facebook Live event on June 22 at noon at  featuring the people behind the projects who will take online questions.

The four finalists and their “Big Idea” are:

a. 70 Faces Media: A multimedia web series comprised of essays, videos, and podcasts spotlighting Jews who defy expectations, conventions, and stereotypes.

b. Friedberg JCC: A safe, nurturing, and fun summer day camp based on Jewish values for LGBTQ youth and their allies.

c. Central Synagogue’s Center for Exploring Judaism: Expansion of an inclusive Jewish hub — the place for any New Yorker looking for a blueprint for Jewish life.

d. TOM: Tikkun Olam Makers: Israel-based global initiative bringing a community of innovators creating affordable solutions for the needs of people with disabilities and the elderly to New York.

“UJA is thrilled to give the community the chance to cast their vote for a program that has potential to create a more open, inclusive, and welcoming Jewish community. The ideas submitted were smart, courageous and bold. We’re optimistic that with the right idea, change is possible, and tomorrow’s community will be even better than today’s. As our second century unfolds, we know that it will take innovative, daring ideas to move us forward,” said Deborah Joselow, Chief Planning Officer, UJA-Federation of New York.