The definition of INNOVATION: the introduction of new things or methods; something new or different.  It was exactly with that in mind that Jamie Richman suggested that we set aside some money from the 2022 Jewish Federation Annual Community Campaign during the Budget & Allocations process last year.  I think it was her thinking and the thinking of the Committee, that as we “emerged” from COVID, the Federation should “incentivize” our community to do some different things.  We wanted people to use their imagination to partner with the Federation to help enhance and define Jewish life in Savannah.

Some of those Innovation grants are bearing fruit in the coming week(s) including a $3,000 award to the Savannah Chapter of Hadassah to bring the Challah Prince to the community.  Idan Chabasov, knowns as The Challah Prince is an internet sensation who is known for his baroque challah creations.  He teaches gorgeous way to braid challah, but even more important, he brings ‘mindfulness’ to the art of baking.  If you haven’t checked him out on Instagram you are missing out on an ever-growing community of art, creativity, positivity, and deliciousness. (see information in eNews)

A second grant of $1,000 was made to support a concert by Gili Yalo, one of the most intriguing new musicians in the Israeli music scene.  He has sung all his life: as a small boy in Ethiopia, as a member of Pirhei Yerushalaim, a choir for religious boys, he sang in the IDF, and was the lead singer in an Israeli reggae group, now he’ll be singing here in Savannah in an intimate setting at Bistro 45. (see information in eNews).

A third grant was made to Shalom School for new intensive Hebrew instruction program that should enhance each of the student’s grasp of the language.  In making the application for the grant, Shalom School leadership teamed up with JEA Camp Savannah where they will be helping to enhance the Judaic content of the Summer program.  How great it is to see two organizations working together!

A fourth grant of $3,000 was made to Chabad of Savannah who will be teaming up with many in the community for a Chanukah Bash to remember in Forsyth Park.  Federation, JEA, and PJ Library are already on board with Chabad to team up for this 1rst Night celebration on Sunday, December 18th (mark your calendars today—this is going to be a big one!).

Each of these programs seeks to innovate and enhance Jewish life in Savannah.  We hope that you’ll be a part of one or many of these offerings…afterall, it is your generous Campaign dollars that make them all possible.

Wishing you all Shabbat Shalom and a safe and enjoyable long Labor Day weekend