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$25 million from Harold and Diane Grinspoon through innovative effort for overnight camps
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$25 million from Harold and Diane Grinspoon through innovative effort for overnight camps

Harold and Diane Grinspoon, signers of the “Giving Pledge”, made a new announcement through their foundation.

JCAMP 180, a core program of the Harold Grinspoon Foundation , will support more than 100 nonprofit Jewish overnight camps over the next five years with the $25 million Forward Together matching grant.

Forward Together will provide unrestricted support to the camps along with capital investments for the physical improvements that are necessary for camp success.

Harold Grinspoon, benefactor and co-founder of the HGF, believes camps are among the most important assets of the Jewish community, providing impactful experiences for Jewish young people to become enculturated in Jewish traditions, values and identity.

“I never was able to go to a Jewish camp, but I know they are crucial ways for young people to plant the roots of lifelong Jewish connections,” says Grinspoon, who has invested more than $55 million dollars in Jewish camps through JCamp 180 over the past 28 years. “I was overjoyed to have visited multiple camps in person this past summer after two summers away due to the COVID-19 pandemic. I saw camps brimming with life, although continuing to struggle with significant mental health, staffing, and infrastructure challenges after the pandemic. The Forward Together grant renews my commitment to helping position Jewish non-profit overnight camps for long-term sustainability for generations.”

Forward Together is a 1:3 matching grant where the HGF disburses $1 for every $3 the camp raises. Each camp will receive a base allocation of funds; if they raise four times the allocation within the grant period, the camp will receive a $10,000 bonus.

JCamp 180 Director Sarah Eisinger says the timing of the grant is critical as camps seek to build on past fundraising successes. “The Harold Grinspoon Foundation support for Jewish summer camp is enduring and we are proud to make this commitment over these next five years,” says Eisinger. “This support will give the camps the resources and tools to maintain and steward their current donors and attract new ones. We hope this match gives the camps the confidence to continue sharing the power of Jewish camp so they can be sustainable into the future.”

JCAMP 180 works with more than 100 nonprofit Jewish overnight camps and nearly 40 nonprofit Jewish day camps across North America, providing them with grants, consulting, training and resources, and providing their professional teams and lay leaders with professional development programs to build their organizational effectiveness. JCamp 180 believes that when Jewish camps are equipped with the knowledge, skills, and resources for long-term organizational excellence they will operate thriving camps that create lifelong Jewish connections.

Inspired by the deep meaning and joy offered by Jewish living, the Harold Grinspoon Foundation helps people connect to Jewish values, faith, traditions, and culture and build vibrant Jewish communities.

Harold Grinspoon is the founder of the Harold Grinspoon Foundation (HGF).

Born in Newton, Massachusetts, Harold was teased as a young boy for being one of the few Jewish youths in town. The anti-Semitic insults he endured, and the subsequent events of World War II and the Holocaust left an indelible mark that would shape his worldview as both an entrepreneur and philanthropist.

In the early 1960s, Harold’s life changed when he purchased a dilapidated two-family home with money borrowed from an in-law. He repaired the house, rented it out for a profit, and launched a career in real estate that has spanned six decades.

In 1978, Harold met Diane Troderman, a former high school teacher who would become his wife and partner in Jewish charitable giving. A battle with tongue cancer in the 1980s had a dramatic impact on Harold and instilled a desire to find meaning beyond profit making. Harold, who credits his Jewish heritage and the values of Judaism as instrumental in his business success, chose to give back – investing his time, money, and energy into strengthening the Jewish community.

The Harold Grinspoon Foundation (HGF) was established in 1991 with the mission of enhancing Jewish life. The Foundation’s philosophy is infused with Harold’s business acumen: visionary ideas, dynamic partnerships, a focus on return on investment, and a drive to understand and meet the needs of people served. To date, the Foundation has invested more than $200 million dollars in Jewish causes, developing successful partnerships with Jewish communal organizations and fellow philanthropists to achieve best results.

In addition to his work with the Foundation, Harold has served as a founding partner and board member for numerous national and international organizations.

In May 2015, Harold joined Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates in SIGNING THE GIVING PLEDGE, a commitment to dedicate the majority of his wealth to philanthropy.

Harold’s passions extend well beyond real estate and Jewish philanthropy. Known for his love of long walks and hiking, he also enjoys dancing, Pilates, and meditation. His passion for the arts find expression in an extensive collection that includes his own work with a series of tree sculptures.

Harold and Diane travel extensively around the world. Between them they have several awards and honorary degrees, as well as six children and eleven grandchildren.

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