A New Way To Give

Natan is a giving circle. Very simply, this means that members pool their charitable contributions and decide together where the pooled funds should go. Natan is also the founder and a key funder of Amplifier: The Jewish Giving Circle Movement, a field-building project that helps anyone - individuals or institutions, at any giving level, funding any types of issues - start and sustain a giving circle.

Giving circles are on the upswing. Increasingly popular among younger and other previously underrepresented donors (e.g. women, racial and ethnic minorities), giving circles are an ideal mechanism for people who want to engage with their philanthropy in a hands-on way, especially within a peer community of other givers. They are ideal for people who want to give proactively, informed by research and with tools for measuring the impact of their giving. Infinitely customizable by issue area, contribution amount, and demographics of members, giving circles offer an experiential education in strategic philanthropy: a chance to proactively decide what sort of change the group's members wish to make in the world and then to solicit applications from and award grants to organizations and individuals working to make that change. And they work! Recent research has demonstrated that giving circle members give more, give more strategically, and engage more deeply in their communities than non-giving circle members.

Learn More:
More Giving Together The Impact of Giving Together Giving Circles Giving Circles in Cross-Cultural Context

Giving circles are also a tremendously powerful tool for building community – for strengthening members’ personal, professional, and philanthropic networks. Through their consensus-based decision-making, they also model the importance of philanthropic partnership and collective impact, reinforcing the truism that no funder, no matter how large or influential, can solve social problems on his or her own.

In a Jewish context, giving circles provide an excellent access point to Jewish life and a way of exploring and strengthening members’ Jewish identities. They bring people together around the Jewish values of tzedakah (philanthropy) and tikkun olam (repairing the world), creating caring, generous communities of people who think deeply and act strategically about the challenges facing the Jewish world.

Why Should You Join Natan?

YOU decide where the money goes. The Natan board underwrites Natan’s operating expenses, so 100% of your membership contribution goes to the grant committee you join – whichever one most resonates with your philanthropic interests. From setting the committee’s strategy to determining which non-profit organizations or social entrepreneurs your committee supports, you have the opportunity to shape all stages of Natan’s allocations process.

You know where your money is going. All of Natan’s grant decisions are based on a rigorous review of written grant applications and in-person (or video) interviews with organizational leadership. When you and your committee decide to make a grant, you’re doing so based on extensive information about an organization’s finances, history, leadership, experience, and impact.

The wisdom of the crowd. Members bring their professional expertise and personal experience to the decision-making process, and all allocations decisions are made collectively. You don’t need to be an expert in the subject at hand - instead, you leverage the diverse experiences and knowledge of your fellow committee members.

It's more fun than giving alone. Natan is a professional, personal, and philanthropic network, a community of successful young professionals, mostly under age 45, who enjoy spending time together and learning from and with each other. Our grantmaking is complemented with a robust calendar of events – salons, screenings, community service, and social events – that strengthen our community.