WAEF grants making a difference in young lives


The Women’s Alliance Endowment Fund (WAEF) of the Jewish Federation Foundation of Greater Rhode Island has been supporting the Jewish community since awarding its first grant in 1993.

Camp JORI, the state’s only Jewish overnight camp, has taken advantage of this opportunity year after year.

“Camp JORI has been very lucky to receive funding from WAEF to assist with staff training. It has been crucial to our success and a highlight of the week for our participants. We have been able to source talented women to add a creative outlet to the training in our already packed schedule,” camp director Kara Liberman wrote in an email.

“One summer, we brought in a yoga instructor to help our staff learn how to teach mindfulness techniques to our campers. Another summer, we brought in a creative art teacher to teach Jewish culture and art through hands-on projects. In addition, we were able to do team building with a Jewish twist. These sessions were truly enjoyed and meaningful to our team. We appreciate the grant and dedication of both WAEF and [the Jewish Alliance of Greater Rhode Island] to Camp JORI.”

The University of Rhode Island Hillel has used WAEF grants for a variety of programs over the past decades. Most recently, WAEF partially funded an intern focused on women’s leadership, engagement and programming.

Here are some reflections from intern Molly Stogner:

“To celebrate Women’s History Month, I put a collaborative program together with the URI Women’s Center. This program highlighted the connection between the Jewish holiday Purim and International Women’s Day. We talked about the choices Queen Esther made and the choices we, as women, make every day. Seeing URI students simultaneously laughing, smiling, getting educated and enjoying each other’s company was extremely rewarding.

“The most inspiring projects I worked on during my internship were a presentation by Holocaust survivor Alice Eichenbaum, and a Holocaust Remembrance, ‘Walk to Remember.’  My sorority sisters knew how important it was to me, and so wanted to learn more about the Holocaust and why it is so important to convey that history to students today.

“Working with Alice Eichenbaum was an experience I wouldn’t trade for the world. She inspired me to make a difference in this world for not only Jews, but women in general. The events I have been able to run and assist in over the last year were incredible.”

If you’re interested in joining the WAEF or making a donation, email endowment@jewishallianceri.org or call 401-421-4111.

CLAIRE UZIEL is the endowment/campaign operations manager at the Jewish Alliance.