BY JENNIFER ZWIRN
In response to the upsurge in religious and racial acts of hate and violence both nationally and worldwide, the Jewish Alliance of Greater Rhode Island kicked off a Community Security Campaign last fall, raising $80,000. With an additional $100,000 from the Jewish Federation Foundation and an anonymous donor, the fund total was nearly $265,000.
Already, the security campaign has provided no-cost risk assessments to Jewish institutions, agencies, cemeteries and synagogues within the catchment area, as well as: MIR-3, a security communications system for communitywide use; a security liaison to foster relationships and coordinate communications with local and national law enforcement agencies; a community security consultant to provide training, education and guidance to all agencies; lobbying and attention to federal funding for ongoing maintenance of said security and safety measures; and a grants process to defray the cost of security upgrades.
The grants process was recently completed by the Community Security Committee, which worked thoughtfully to determine which projects would get support from this supplemental campaign. On the recommendation of the committee, the Board of Directors approved $105,617 to be distributed to 15 institutions for 26 projects.
Those projects include outdoor lighting and fencing upgrades at the Jewish Community Day School; shatterproof window film, key fobs, cameras and security planters at Providence Hebrew Day School; shatterproof window film at the University of Rhode Island Hillel, Temple Sinai, Lincoln Park Cemetery and Temple Habonim; cameras, additional monitors, card access and panic buttons at Temple Emanu-El, The Phyllis Siperstein Tamarisk Assisted Living Residence, and Shalom and Shalom II apartments; proper fencing and upgraded locks at entryways at the Chabad of West Bay; a motion sensor and an upgraded communication system throughout Camp JORI’s facilities; Brown RISD Hillel’s wireless duress system; and cameras and monitors for Congregation Beth David.
“It was important to the committee that we fund these security upgrades. Meeting the community’s immediate needs was crucial,” said Harold Foster, chairman of the Community Security Committee. “We are happy to be able to assist in making our community safer.”
Jewish agencies that apply for grants must participate in a free facility risk assessment; demonstrate an unmet security need; and provide a portion of the project funding. The Request for Proposal (RFP) was released to over 50 institutions in September 2017, with the requirement that it be completed and submitted no later than January 2018.
Guidelines for grant recipients include one year to complete supported projects, regular updates, and an outcome report for evaluation.
To contribute to meeting the security needs of our community, contact Trine Lustig, vice president of philanthropy at the Jewish Alliance of Greater R.I., at email@example.com or 401-421-4111, ext. 223.
JENNIFER ZWIRN (firstname.lastname@example.org) works in allocations and endowment for the Jewish Alliance of Greater Rhode Island. She is also AccessJewishRI vocational services contact.