How do you raise a generation of givers? How do you show young people that their voice and their values can have an impact? The Atlanta Jewish Foundation is pleased to announce a new program for teens in Atlanta, the Young Philanthropy Fellows. We aim to empower the youth of Jewish ATL and teach them how they can make change in their community. 

Thanks to the vision and generosity of Justin and Mara Berman, In November we are launching a five-session program that will teach teens aged 13 to 15 how to become philanthropic leaders and engage in acts of Tzedakah that will make a tangible difference in their community.  

Of this new initiative, Justin Berman says: 

“This program is very important to Mara and me as we continue to teach our children about philanthropy and what it means to give back. We are fortunate that giving back has been engrained in our family but having real-world, hands-on experience is invaluable. We want kids to see there is a whole other world out there besides the bubble we live in. Helping both Jewish and Non-Jewish causes is critical to move our city forward.”  

This experience is designed for a small cohort of students to ensure they have an equal voice among their peers. The goal is for the students involved to step outside their comfort zones and encounter new perspectives. The fellows will have the opportunity to recommend causes, meet leaders of local organizations, and allocate real funds towards those groups. 

The Young Philanthropy Fellows will learn about Jewish Atlanta’s most critical social issues and how they can take action through service, strategic grantmaking, and more. They will also have firsthand experiences with local community organizations, and the program concludes with an intergenerational Shabbat ceremony where the fellows showcase their granting allocations. 

Additionally, through this program, we hope to help our teenagers form a strong Jewish identity and understand the Jewish values that drive philanthropic giving. They will have the opportunity to gain experience as leaders in the Atlanta community and meet experts in various fields. And, of course, we hope they will form friendships and connections that they will carry into their adult lives. 

To participate, candidates will fill out a brief application form highlighting the community issues they care about most and what they hope to gain from this program. Participants are required to open a Young Philanthropist Fund with a minimum contribution of $250, which the Atlanta Jewish Foundation will match. Participants will come together at the end of the program to pool grants from their funds to allocate to their organization of their choice. 

To apply, click here

If you have questions about this exciting new program, please contact Kaylin Berinhout at