If UJC had pursued federations' goals with the same passion with which they have pursued funding for the Ethiopian National Project, just think what the organization the federations actually own might have accomplished. Let's update you:
~ The system's strongest supporters of UJC demanded that the organization cease these efforts. Not only were these leaders ignored, the only person to respond to the "request" was the ubiquitous Toni Young. In her response she evidenced that she hasn't a clue about collective responsibility or collective action.
~ In a Memorandum to Campaign/FRD Directors, never discussed with Federation CEOs or Chairs, a wonderful Pittsburgh (fancy that!!) FRD Director asked his colleagues to press their federation leadership for ENP contributions.
~ Do you think for a moment that these "urgent appeals" were discussed by UJC with the leadership of the Jewish Agency or Joint? Of course not. Not surprising, nothing UJC does vis-a-vis Israel appears to be discussed in advance (or for that matter, in the moment) with Agency and/or Joint. UJC still gives lip service to the "partnership." No one is fooled.
~ Then, at the Young Leadership Cabinet Retreat, so inspiring to UJC leadership, the National Chairman was moved to engage in some "real fund raising" asking the Cabinet Members to step forward with individual commitments of "$1000 each" to support an Ethiopian student in school programs. A total disconnect between needs and responsibilities and planning and articulation evidenced by the response -- $77,000 (a nice number) from 200 lay participants or...$380 per person. This is no way to raise money.
Here we are then: today the ENP is UJC's highest fund raising priority; yesterday it was "Yemeni Jews to Monsey;" today the JCPA is running fund raising parlor meetings; yesterday we were drafting Resource Development Guidelines. Follow the bouncing ball. No focus, no sense. Here we are and "here" means "nowhere."
No doubt more to follow. After all this circus is a long running act.