This program, JFLead, gave participants the opportunity to learn more about Jewish Free Loan by meeting board and staff members, attending JFL events, and participating in mock loan interviews. Additionally, the group learned about fundraising strategies, annual reporting, and how nonprofits work to meet the needs of the community.
Each month, participants were given reading material to discuss with JFL staff and board members as well as events or activities to participate in or attend.
The program was created and spearheaded by Jessielyn Hirschl, former JFL employee and current Board Member, in 2022 to get younger professionals in the community involved with and informed about Jewish Free Loan. Drawing inspiration from similar programs she was familiar with, Jessielyn aimed to provide a way to expose Jewish individuals in their 20s/30s to the work of JFL.
“I’ve been fortunate to learn from a few different leadership programs that are offered by Jewish organizations in the Valley. As someone in my 30s, I felt that there was a need to spread more awareness about JFL to a younger generation, but I also know that individuals my age are often looking for a growth opportunity,” Jessielyn explains.
Not only does this program expose the participants to JFL, but also to general nonprofit board service so that they could have an impact in other organizations as well, according to Jessielyn.
“The program is something near and dear to my heart. I have a huge belief in the mission of the program,” JFLead participant, Jonathan Nevins, shares.
One participant, Austin Singer, has joined the JFL board.
“Any time I do outreach for JFL my favorite part is seeing others get excited about the organization. I have been so inspired and humbled during my time as an employee and volunteer for JFL, and helping others experience those same feelings makes my passion for the organization that much stronger,” Jessielyn recounts.
Jonathan, Austin, and Zack Levin, the third JFLead participant, were recognized for their achievement at JFL’s Gratitude Gathering in May 2023.
“I love how passionate everyone is about Jewish Free Loan. I truly felt part of the family immediately. I can’t wait to be involved in some aspect going forward,” Jonathan says.
To learn more about Jewish Free Loan’s outreach and community engagement, go to https://jewishfreeloan.org/in-the-news.
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