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Jewish groups shift drives

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By Todd Cohen

The Jewish communities in Greensboro and Winston-Salem have rescheduled their annual fund drives in the wake of special campaigns this year to raise emergency funds for Israel.

After raising nearly $1.6 million this year in its annual drive that typically runs from October through May, for example, the Greensboro Jewish Federation raised another $773,000 in the Israel emergency campaign, which began in June and had a goal of $750,000.

The annual drive now has been pushed back to December through May, says Marilyn Chandler, the federation’s executive director.

While a campaign goal has not yet been set, she says, it likely will be at least as much as was raised in the last annual drive.

“To fulfill obligations we have to all our beneficiaries, we would need a campaign of at least as much,” she says.

Heading the campaign will be Joseph Nehman, vice president of Tanger Factory Outlets Center, who chairs the men’s campaign, and Catherine Magid, president of Shabbat-to-go, who chairs the women’s campaign.

Local Jewish federations and councils throughout the U.S. that are members of United Jewish Communities, formerly the United Jewish Appeal, have raised $312 million for the emergency campaign, mainly to provide children and families in Israel with security and protection from terrorism.

Heading the emergency campaign in Greensboro were Frank Brenner, owner of Atlantic Scrap Metal Recycling Co. in Winston-Salem, and Deborah Kintzing, a local theater teacher, producer and performer.

Despite a decline in its assets stemming from the falling stock market, the federation’s Jewish Foundation of Greensboro, the federation’s endowment arm, posted an increase in the number of funds it manages – to 125 from 100 a year ago. The foundation’s assets now total nearly $14 million.

To strengthen its ties with the Jewish community in Beltsy in Moldova of the former Soviet Union, an eight-member federation delegation this summer teamed up for a Jewish family camp there and sponsored an initiative, launched by Greensboro dentists Stephen Mackler and Robert Kriegsman, to provide dental services and training. The federation also plans to publish a coffee-table book about the two Jewish communities.

In Winston-Salem, after raising $270,000 in its annual drive last fall – down from roughly $280,000 each of the previous three years — the Jewish Community Council this year moved its annual drive to the spring, the same time it held its emergency campaign for Israel.

The annual drive raised $152,000, while the emergency drive, which had a $250,000 goal, raised $312,000. The council will hold a phone-a-thon, probably in October, to raise more money for the annual campaign, said Gusti Frankel, a lawyer with Womble Carlyle who co-chairs the campaign with Dr. Neil Wolfman, a professor emeritus at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center.

The council traditionally has relied on donors who give $2,500 or more, but also receives smaller donations from members of the Jewish community, Frankel says.

The annual drive received gifts from 54 families, while the emergency drive received gifts from 37 families.

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