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As a member of Prizmah’s Financial Vitality Team, I am frequently asked by development professionals about how to build community support for Jewish Day Schools. Those of us involved in Jewish Day Schools see the richness of experiential Judaism transmitted in and out of the classroom; how do we reach those who are not involved as deeply as we are?

A couple of weeks ago, on Shabbat, reading The Jewish Week, a short article with a provocative title caught my eye. In “You Are What You Give To” Rabbi Wolpe contends that Jews are charitable givers, regardless of affiliation or connection and that giving is in Jewish DNA. Tzedakah is a Jewish value transmitted through generations.  If that value is not nurtured and supported, will it disappear? Even those who are not interested in a Day School education but believe in feeding the poor, eradicating disease and promoting social justice can feel sure that a generation of Jews who will continue to support these life sustaining causes are learning those values everyday in a Jewish Day School. Aren’t we lucky to have schools that can educate our children to live and give as Jews!

Can you use Rabbi Wolpe’s thinking as a way for your school to develop its own case for giving?