Influenced by research indicating that Jewish overnight camping plays a key role in the Jewish identity of young people, the Harold Grinspoon Foundation (HGF) created the Grinspoon Institute for Jewish Philanthropy (GIJP) in 2004. The Grinspoon Institute pairs consulting services from its mentors - focused on fundraising, governance, strategic planning, and technology support - with highly leveraged matching grants programs to help organizations realize success.
The Grinspoon Institute also began offering an annual conference in 2004, bringing all participating organizations together for focused training and networking. The initial conference was held in the home of Harold Grinspoon and Diane Troderman.
Through matching challenge grants, introduced in December 2005, the Institute has helped bring over $60 Million in new funding to camps. Currently, more than 75 camps, as well as several other organizations, receive direct services from the Grinspoon Institute.
To address technology needs, the Grinspoon Institute also created the Alumni and Donor Outreach Technology Program in 2005. Camps receive valuable assistance in determining appropriate software solutions; planning for collection and maintenance of alumni, donor, and gift data; and understanding the best practices in alumni and fundraising technology. The Technology Program team also offers one-on-one technology consulting and support that supplements the mentoring services received by participating organizations.
The rapid growth of the Grinspoon Institute required moving the now-annual conference to a larger space in 2007 - the Mass Mutual Training Center in Chicopee, MA.
In 2008, the Grinspoon Institute created the Camp Legacy Initiative and Create a Jewish Legacy for Western Massachusetts, both modeled after a program of the San Diego Jewish Community Foundation, to motivate Jewish summer camps to secure legacy planned gifts from loyal donors. These initiatives are financially supported by the Areivim Philanthropic Group. Create a Jewish Legacy for Western Massachusetts is a collaboration of the Harold Grinspoon Foundation, the Jewish Endowment Foundation for Western Massachusetts, and the Jewish Federations of Western Massachusetts and the Berkshires.
In 2009, the Grinspoon Institute began to supplement its annual conference with regular Webinars and a monthly eNewsletter to continue learning and networking opportunities throughout the year.
Continued growth of the Grinspoon Institute required yet another move for the conference - to the Sheraton Springfield Monarch Place Hotel in Springfield, MA.
In 2010, the Grinspoon Institute also launched GIFT Program to help camp development professionals learn and implement best practices in fundraising.
Finally, the Grinspoon Institute and JCC Association formed a partnership to combine their efforts and resources to further impact JCCs and their resident and day camps throughout the JCC Movement.
The Grinspoon Institute of Jewish Philanthropy changes it's name to become JCamp 180 to better reflect its offerings and mission. JCamp 180 provides nonprofit Jewish camps with free consulting services that include Board and operations coaching, technology assistance, and a series of matching grant challenges.
The Grinspoon Institute continually looks for ways to leverage its expertise to help our participating organizations reach their goals and become self-sustaining.