On Super Sunday, UJC seeks to strengthen its donor base

On Super Sunday, UJC seeks to strengthen its donor base

Fund-raiser courts new givers; day to include hands-on mitzva fair

Staff Writer, New Jersey Jewish News

Volunteers of all ages made phone calls at last year’s Super Sunday. Photo by Johanna Ginsberg
Volunteers of all ages made phone calls at last year’s Super Sunday. Photo by Johanna Ginsberg

Over 700 volunteers and visitors are expected at the Aidekman Family Jewish Community Campus in Whippany on Dec. 12. Phones will be ringing all over Morris, Essex, and Sussex counties as volunteers call donors to ask for a gift to the 2011 annual United Jewish Appeal Campaign of MetroWest NJ on Super Sunday.

The 2011 UJA annual campaign goal is $21 million, and pledges made on Super Sunday generally mark about 10 percent of the total campaign.

The emphasis on Super Sunday this year is new-donor acquisition and raising more new dollars.

“The economic climate has made the past couple of years a challenge for many people, resulting in an increased demand for services,” said Mindy Kahn of Randolph, who is cochairing this year’s event with David Boyko of Short Hills and Mark Glajchen of Livingston. “The programs and services that United Jewish Communities of MetroWest NJ regularly supports also require ongoing funding. Our current donors are incredibly generous people. But we need more supporters so that we can ensure no one in need of help is turned away and so we can build dynamic programs for the future.

“The only way to achieve this is to increase our donor base and the number of dollars coming into the campaign.”

The phonathon will run from 9:30 a.m. until 8 p.m., with plenty of activities going on simultaneously. The campaign funds humanitarian, social service, and educational needs through local agencies, as well as in Jewish communities in Israel and in some 60 countries around the world.

“If I had to choose the one day of the year that best exemplifies the meaning of community, it would be Super Sunday,” said UJC MetroWest executive vice president Max Kleinman. “People of every age and stage of life ‘get it’ — that the work we do touches every area of Jewish life in MetroWest and answers Jewish needs in Israel and Jewish communities around the world. They understand there are many needs that can only be met with their help.

“And they make the conscious decision to volunteer their time or make a meaningful gift — many do both — on behalf of the UJA campaign. When we work together, the possibilities are endless,” Kleinman said.

‘Reinforcing links’

In a first for this community, CareLink will hold a mitzva fair from 2 to 4 p.m. “It’s an opportunity to introduce families with children ages three-11 to the values of philanthropy and volunteerism,” said Boyko.

“As a community forum for connecting people to people, CareLink really reflects another kind of hands-on opportunity to reinforce the links within our local community, with the extended Jewish community, and between the generations,” said Boyko.

CareLink is a partnership of UJC MetroWest, Jewish Family Service of MetroWest, and JCC MetroWest.

Children’s entertainer Mama Doni (aka Doni Zasloff Thomas, a Montclair mother of two) and her band will perform at a free family concert at 3 p.m.

Drives for the Gift of Life Bone marrow registry, blood donations, children’s books, and canned food will provide additional avenues for Jews in MetroWest to help one another, in addition to a tzedaka can drop. Judaica vendors will also be available for shoppers on site.

“Super Sunday offers the entire community a chance to come together and to support other Jews in ways that are most meaningful to them, whether through providing financial support, making calls, doing mitzva projects, or sharing experiences like the Mama Doni concert. Whatever someone chooses to do supports am Yisrael,” said Glajchen.

Super Sunday volunteers have a choice of four timeslots: 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.; noon-3:30 p.m.; 3-6 p.m.; and 5:30-8 p.m. Meals and snacks will be available for volunteers and their families. Baby-sitting services will be available for children six months and older from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

JCC MetroWest is also offering free chair massages to call-room volunteers in appreciation of their service.

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