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May 10 Federation Five

By May 10, 2024May 14th, 2024Federation News

We’ve all been watching with worry as protests and encampments take over college campuses nationwide. Federation’s Community Security Director Brian Davis and Chief of Programs & Grantmaking Rich Walter have been diligently following the anti-Israel, antisemitic incidents on our local college campuses. Most importantly, our teams are working closely with our partners at Hillels of Georgia, the local ADL, and others to ensure the safety of our students on campus and ensure there is no disruption to their learning or their ability to participate in Jewish life.

In the long term, as we finalize this grant-making cycle, we are doubling down on our investments in initiatives that will make long-term change, such as helping students identify more strongly with Israel and giving them the tools to develop the language and voice to stand as strong, proud Jews.

CLICK ON THE PHOTO BELOW to watch the video of Brian and Rich explaining in more detail.

Post-October 7, the needs within our community have grown exponentially. In response, Federation recently made some special allocations to address the most pressing concerns.

Overnight Security Personnel at Regional Camps
In just a few weeks, thousands of young people will make the pilgrimage to camps across Georgia. But with the state of the world, there is heightened concern for the safety and security of these kids and camp staff. Federation’s grant will enhance the camps’ abilities to take additional strategic security measures, bringing peace of mind to staff, children, and parents.

BeWell with Hillel
According to a recent report, US college students stated that ramifications of the war in Israel caused a decline in their ability to focus on schoolwork. A shocking 50% mentioned a feeling of alienation on campus and 44% mentioned difficulty relating to friends. Federation’s grant will reinstate a partnership with BeWell, Hillels of Georgia, and Jewish Family & Career Services to provide one-on-one counseling for students, provide workshops for students, and conduct staff training about wellness.

Supporting Displaced Israelis at Local Summer Camps

For displaced Israeli families living in Atlanta, getting settled and establishing a sense of “normalcy” for their young children has been challenging.

In response, Federation’s grant will subsidize the difference between the generous discounts made available by the camps and the fees required to send five local Israeli children to camp.

Maintaining the positive health and wellness of older adults is a priority for Federation’s AgeWell Atlanta initiative, which combats isolation and other challenges through warm handoffs, helpful resources, and a most beloved signature program, Senior Day at the Marcus JCC of Atlanta (MJCCA). Senior Day recently brought together more than 70 older adults for an afternoon of activities tailored to their interests and abilities with focuses on art, fitness, health and wellness, Jewish culture, and more. It is a wonderful opportunity for seniors from all parts of metro Atlanta seeking social interaction to enjoy a day out with their peers that includes lunch, transportation (if needed), and even the ability to use the facilities of the MJCCA for the rest of the day.

AgeWell Atlanta is a four-agency collaborative, including Federation, Jewish Family & Career Services, Jewish HomeLife, and the Marcus JCC of Atlanta. The partner agencies’ offerings address the most pressing needs of Atlanta’s aging population, connecting seniors and caregivers with local resources that include recreational activities, social services, long-term care options, caregiver support groups, and much more. A single call to the warm line can often result in a referral to three to four services that will benefit that senior or caregiver.

An older adult in Atlanta never needs to feel isolated or alone. Seniors and caregivers in need of support should call 866-243-9355 or email Learn more at

Atlanta’s Victoria Kimerling Oliphant recently traveled to Argentina and Uruguay on National Young Leadership Cabinet’s Study Mission. Cabinet is the premier leadership training program of the Jewish philanthropic community. Grounded in Jewish values, this program engages current and future global leaders and philanthropists through education, connection, and inspiration.

“I, along with 180 other young leaders from across the US & Canada, had the opportunity to visit with the local Jewish communities in Buenos Aires and Montevideo and see the impact of our Federation dollars in action.

Thanks to Federation’s Partners Fund, our core Israel & Overseas partners – the Joint Distribution Committee (JDC), the Jewish Agency for Israel, and World ORT- use those allocations to make an incredible impact on the lives of Jews throughout the world. Seeing the work that we’re able to accomplish together as part of the Federation system, work that would be impossible for the Atlanta Jewish community, or any one Jewish community, to do on its own, reminded me of our unique power as a collective to truly make a difference in the lives of Jews in Israel & around the world.

At a time when antisemitism is on the rise and many Jews around the world are scared to openly express their Jewish identity, it can be easy to feel worried about the future of Israel and the future of the Jewish people. But this Study Mission gave me hope.”

For more information about National Young Leadership Cabinet, email Director of NextGen Becca Langfelder at

TOM – Tikkun Olam Makers – is an Israeli-turned-global venture that creates affordable and innovative solutions to challenges in the disability community. Federation’s Jewish Ability Atlanta and its Innovation Initiative are proud funders of this program that creates solutions for these individuals/families entirely free of charge.

The Atlanta TOM community is comprised of Makers (engineers, designers, developers from Georgia Tech and Emory) and ‘Need-Knowers’ (individuals with a personal understanding of a neglected challenge). The Atlanta Makeathon recently brought together five project teams which represented one ‘need knower’. The winning team created a solution for a 10th grade student classically trained pianist who, following a recent accident, was unable to use the piano pedals thus inhibiting his ability to play at a high level. The team of ‘Makers’ created a bite sensor to allow pressure to be put on the pedals, enabling this young man to continue to play, which is something he loves.

Not only does TOM create solutions that enable individuals with disabilities to have an ordinary life, it also creates a community of students who are aware of barriers that society creates and the need for universal design so individuals with disabilities can be contributing members to the community.

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