PRG Helps Leaders Find A New Path

Client: Jewish Family & Community Services East Bay

Jewish Family & Community Services East Bay (JFCS), founded in 1877, is one of the Bay Area’s “legacy” institutions and a leading provider of refugee resettlement services, programs for young children and their parents, support for Holocaust survivors, therapy, and services to older adults including home care. They have long been known as a respected, powerful voice for change in the East Bay.

Despite being more than 140 years old the organization had few endowed assets and were overly reliant on contracts for service. The full potential of their large and loyal donor base had not been maximized, yet needs were growing with refugee surges from Afghanistan and Ukraine. What’s more, their long time Executive Director was soon to retire.

PRG was brought in to conduct a full fundraising assessment and craft a financial and leadership strategy to substantially grow their endowment.

PRG convened a group of seasoned professional and volunteer leadership from JFCS’s current and former Board members to help guide and advise its work. The consultants engaged one-on-one with a sample of JFCS’s donors to determine their levels of interest. Meanwhile, the data developed by PRG’s assessment confirmed that there was both significant donor potential and true interest in bolstering the organization’s sustainability through a larger endowment. But the path wasn’t a traditional campaign approach. It would require investment in a sustained major gifts effort and substantial investment in JFCS’s planned giving program.

JFCS’s fund development program broke all records in 2021 and is on an even higher pace for 2022. The Board, Long Term Assets Committee, and new Executive Director act as a unified team with major donors and as stewards of JFCS’s Legacy Circle members. Communications functions have been unified. And PRG continues to serve as advisors, supporting the agency’s commitment to a sustained program of endowment investment.

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