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Multigenerational retreat sparks key conversations about family and philanthropy

The weekend featured discussions about impactful philanthropic giving, how to identify shared values and methodologies that unite families through effective financial communications.

Families prepare to bring in shabbat at Jewish National Fund-USA's multi-gen retreat
Families prepare to bring in shabbat at Jewish National Fund-USA's multi-gen retreat

When did you last speak with your family about your philanthropic giving? How can you involve your children? And what’s the best way to create a lasting legacy? These questions and more were discussed among 150 philanthropists from high-net-worth families at Jewish National Fund-USA’s Multigenerational Retreat, held at the Park Hyatt Aviara Resort, Golf Club & Spa in Carlsbad, Calif.

From left: Karen Gibson, Jordan Cohen and Amy Berko Iles

Co-chaired by Jewish National Fund-USA Ambassadors Caryn & Mark Israel and Amy Berko Iles, the private gathering welcomed prominent families from across the country for a weekend of meaningful discussions about impactful philanthropic giving, how to identify shared values and methodologies that unite families through effective financial communications.

With an emphasis on ‘family,’ the event featured a warm and festive Friday-night Shabbat dinner. The evening also saw participants present their family histories, which was complimented by an expert genealogist-in-residence who helped attendees better understand their respective backgrounds.

From left: Chuck Fax, and Caryn and Mark Israel

“Lauren and I were delighted to join so many families like our own who care deeply about the land and people of Israel,” said Jewish National Fund-USA president, Dr. Sol Lizerbram. “Sometimes, it’s important to take a step back from our busy lives and see the bigger picture, and I am so pleased that our retreat gave participants this opportunity. I know they highly appreciated the conversations we sparked, especially around initiatives like the Jewish Future Pledge.”

The Jewish Future Pledge is a worldwide movement inspiring Jews of all backgrounds to commit that from the charity they leave at their passing, at least half is earmarked to support the Jewish people and/or Israel.

Reflecting on the event, Jewish National Fund-USA National Campaign Director, Major Gifts, Diane Scar, highlighted the overwhelming positive feedback. “It was such a wonderful weekend,” she said. “It was gratifying to hear attendees say to me, ‘Your organization really cares about us and our family as people. I’m not just a donor!’ and, ‘This is the first time I have had an open conversation about money in front of my adult children. It was liberating and about time! Thank you for helping me facilitate this conversation.’ ”

Participants also shared how the retreat gave them better tools and a forum to convey information about their giving with their children. “I already did a Donor Advised Fund and never discussed it [with my kids]. However, I now want to start one for our next generation!”

To learn more about Jewish National Fund-USA’s major donor societies, email Diane Scar at: dscar@jnf.org (410-486-3317, Ext. 840).

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Jewish National Fund-USA builds a strong, vibrant future for the land and people of Israel through bold initiatives and Zionist education. As a leading philanthropic movement, the organization supports critical environmental and nation-building activities in Israel’s north and south as it develops new communities in the Negev and Galilee, connects the next generation to Israel, and creates infrastructure and programs that support ecology, people with disabilities, and heritage site preservation, all while running a fully accredited study abroad experience through its Alexander Muss High School in Israel.
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