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Author(s): Boyd, Jonathan
Date: 2021
Date: 2021
Abstract: As soon as the seriousness of the COVID-19 pandemic became evident, concern began to be expressed in the Jewish community about how its effects might damage aspects of Jewish life. Our July 2020 survey of Jews across the UK was designed to investigate some of these effects and bring some data into policy discussion about the future of the community.

Part of that discussion involves community income, and specifically whether Jews will feel able to donate to charities in the ways they have previously, or if they will continue to pay membership fees to synagogues or make voluntary contributions to cover the Jewish studies programmes, security and other supplementary activities in Jewish schools.

This paper looks at these issues first by examining respondents’ giving behaviours in 2019, and comparing them to their actual or expected behaviours during the first few months of the pandemic. It finds that, as of July 2020, its effects were found to be rather limited – while charitable giving, synagogue membership fees and voluntary contributions to schools were all expected to take a hit, a strong majority indicated no change in their giving behaviour at this time. Moreover, there are some indications that a shift has taken place in people’s tendency towards giving to Jewish charities over general ones. Whether this is part of a longer-term trend or simply a response to the pandemic is unclear.

The study then investigates those who said they were planning to make a ‘negative switch’ in their giving behaviour, to explore the extent to which that change was due to economic factors caused by the pandemic, or two alternative possibilities: their economic situation prior to it, or the strength/weakness of their Jewish identity.

It finds that changes in behaviour are heavily influenced by the economic impact of the pandemic, particularly with respect to synagogue membership fees, but that Jewish identity also plays a part, most acutely in relation to making voluntary contributions to schools.

Author(s): Feine, Zvi
Date: 2019
Date: 2019
Abstract: Jewish charities are a subgroup of about two thousand, five hundred organizations, accounting for 1.5% of the total number of main charities in England and Wales. The increasing total income of general charities has prompted considerable debate about the perceived concentration of income and the perceived dominance of bigger charities over smaller ones. Meanwhile, the implications of competition for charitable behavior have remained underappreciated. Building on these assumptions and aiming to test how far the results of research carried out in the charitable sector in general apply to the Jewish charitable sector in particular, the research investigates the trends in concentration of income of a sample of 1301 Jewish charities operating between 1995 and 2015, using common measures of concentration to describe the competitiveness of the Jewish charitable sector in England and Wales. The findings suggest that the sector, in line with the wider UK charitable sector, experienced high levels of growth in terms of both aggregate total income and the number of charities operating, along with decreasing levels of income concentration. These findings allow one to hypothesize that, other things being constant, the increasing numbers of entrant charities may well have increased the size distribution of charities providing the same products or services, therefore exacerbating the competition for charitable funding in the Jewish charitable sector. This, in turn, on the one hand is likely to have exacerbated the competition for donations especially among charities pursuing similar causes, reducing the total amount of charitable money devoted to particular causes. On the other hand, the increasing numbers of charities providing the same products or services and the resultant increasing competition for funding may have impacted on the costs and efforts Jewish charities were able to divert to fundraising at the expense of resources that could be devoted, instead, to service provision.
Date: 2000
Abstract: The financial resources of the UK Jewish voluntary sector is the first publication to report the findings of JPR's research programme, Long-term Planning for British Jewry.

Building on the Jewish Community Information database of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, JPR compiled a comprehensive database of organizations across the community to act as the foundation for all the organizational aspects of the Long-term Planning project. It emerged that the UK Jewish voluntary sector comprises just under 2,000 financially independent organizations. In order for the community to maintain this number of organizations, the income of the Jewish voluntary sector from all its funding streams has to be substantial. These financial resources, however, have never been systematically addressed.

JPR commissioned an international expert in the voluntary sector, Professor Peter Halfpenny, Director of the Centre for Applied Social Research at the University of Manchester, to carry out this complex accountancy project. Its objectives were to provide a multi-dimensional analysis of the income and expenditure of the Jewish voluntary sector from all its funding streams and to make comparisons with similar data about the UK voluntary sector as a whole.

This report establishes the parameters of the financial resources currently available within the Jewish voluntary sector. It demonstrates that the sector has a significant and complex economy. Moreover, British Jews invest proportionately more in these voluntary organizations than does the UK population as a whole.