For the fourth consecutive year, JEWISHcolorado is awarding $50,000 in Staenberg Family Foundation Anything Grants to Jewish organizations statewide for numerous projects and programs, ranging from micro grants for Jewish teen programming to perennial gardens for seniors, and from capital projects to diversity, equity, and inclusion programs.
Supported by the family foundation of business leader and philanthropist Michael Staenberg, these are one-time matching grants, ranging from $1,000 to $5,000. They are designed to cover up to 50% of a project’s budget, with the incentive for the applying organization to raise the other half. The grants are facilitated by JEWISHcolorado. Similar Anything Grant programs operate in Omaha, NE and St. Louis, MO.
Nearly 40 organizations applied to JEWISHcolorado from communities in Boulder, Colorado Springs, and Denver. An independent committee of five young adults active in JEWISHcolorado’s Young Adult Division along with members of JEWISHcolorado’s staff reviewed the applications and made recommendations to fund 15 organizations with grants totaling $50,000.
“I started the Anything Grant program six or seven years ago, and the reason I did was to help local Jewish organizations and to show how you can make big changes with a small amount of money,” said Staenberg. Additionally, the program engages Jewish young adults to help review grant applications and direct the dollars. “I want young people to know that a little philanthropy can touch thousands of lives,” Staenberg said.
The JEWISHcolorado Anything Grants Committee included Leigh Ackerman, Jessica Strouse, Nikki Figa, Marc Goldenberg, and Jacob Hertzig, along with staff members Steven Baker and Joseph Dubroff. “This process teaches young adults about the needs in our Jewish community, and empowers them, along with the grantees, through philanthropy,” said Baker, who has led the grantmaking for the past three years.
This year’s Staenberg Anything grantees include Congregation Bonai Shalom in Boulder; Denver Community Kollel; Bais Menachem (Chabad) in Denver; Temple Emanuel in Denver; Shalom Park in Aurora; Efshar Project in Denver; JTown in Englewood; CU Boulder Hillel; Temple Beit Torah in Colorado Springs; the Boulder Chevra Kadisha; University of Denver Hillel; Alef Academy in Denver; Kavod Senior Life in Denver; Keshet of the Rockies; and Moving Traditions/Listen and Learn in Denver.
Michael and Carol Staenberg established the Staenberg Family Foundation in 2005 as a supporting foundation of the Jewish Federation of St. Louis to mobilize resources needed to preserve and enhance Jewish life in St. Louis, Israel, and around the world. In 2018, they expanded their support to Colorado.