Final Allocation Changes Allocation
Overseas Impact (JAFI/JDC) $1,462,250 ($777,500) $684,750
This is real. These are the allocation results from a federation that was among the largest percentage allocators to JAFI and Joint core budgets throughout its history. Now, in one Draconian action this community is contemplating cutting its allocation to JAFI/Joint core by an astounding 53% -- for no evident reason. In my recollection -- which goes back at least 40 years -- this would be the single largest percentage reduction to core by any federation in any single year.
What does this action by a once-outstanding federation?
- It demonstrates what can happen anywhere when there is no Continental overseas advocacy effort. You remember the pleas by Chair Siegal that federations increase their core allocations? Maybe he does too. CEO Core-Allocations-What-Are-Those sure doesn't. You may also remember the appointment of an Overseas Allocations Task Force with a great Chair, Baltimore's Bruce Sholk, which....did what exactly? This is not just a single Federation's failing; it is a Continental systemic collapse -- at a time of great needs, a federation whose annual campaign did go down by about $380,000, doubles down with a core allocation reduction.
- The have been many who have argued to me that "under-allocating" federations whose leaders sit with the Chicagos of our system, through some process of hypothecated osmosis, will absorb the lessens of those which responsibly allocate and consequently increase their overseas allocations. I responded that I had heard this argument before -- during the unlamented ONAD where federation after federation reduced their allocations while sitting on that Overseas Needs committee. Yet, the fiction is promoted as fact -- as is always the case with JFNA.
- A professional leader with no federation background with an agenda that conflicts with the totality of the concept of collective responsibility,
- A lay Chair who shares a personal agenda paired with a lack of awareness of the meaning of collective responsibility, and
- A sense of the Overseas allocation as an ATM for those personal agendas
Join those factors with a national professional leadership that only knows the words but has no interest in the meaning of collective responsibility -- knows not how to advocate for it, or how to convey its meaning to the federations themselves. Thus, these "leaders" actually believe that so-called "Signature Initiatives" and a "Voluntary Project" in which self-selected federations (and, perhaps, other funders) will embark on some serious but certainly not collective action. In its thoughtless embrace of the Global Planning Table, now indistinguishable from JFNA itself, JFNA has no standing to advocate for the collective that it neither understands nor can articulate. And the Joint and Jewish Agency stand by in evident silence and probable disbelief.
This federation decision, just one of many, would be the rebuttal to those federation leaders who demand that the Jewish Agency and Joint Distribution Committee commit to significantly fund the federations' commitment to so-called "Signature Initiatives" arising out of the Global Planning Table. Take a look guys -- here would be over $800,000 in "skin in the game" grabbed by a single federation for its own agenda -- not the agenda of the Jewish People, the agenda of a single federation.
Friends, who at JFNA has the standing to bring the moral suasion necessary to mentor an unknowing federation CEO about the criticality of support for the collective action embodied in core allocations to the Jewish Agency, JDC and World ORT when JFNA itself is driving federations away from those very core allocations?
We are so far from the principles that drove the merger that created JFNA that we can't even remember what they were.
Know this: there are those reading this Post (while denying that they ever read this thing, of course) who haven't a clue what I am talking about.