JCRC and ADL Announce New Grant Program to Fund Innovative and Impactful Initiatives Promoting Somali and Jewish Stories in Minnesota

October 10, 2019

Minneapolis, MN – The Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (JCRC) and ADL (the Anti-Defamation League) announced today a new grant program to fund innovative and impactful initiatives to amplify Somali and Jewish stories in Minnesota.  The new program builds upon ongoing efforts to strengthen understanding and relationships between Minnesota’s Somali, Jewish and other marginalized communities. ADL has invested $25,000 to fund the grant program and JCRC will provide operational and administrative support. Grantees can receive up to $5,000 per grant.

“The JCRC is deeply grateful for ADL’s partnership and investment to request proposals to creatively tell stories that all communities need to hear,” said Steve Hunegs, executive director of the JCRC. “The challenges Jews and Somalis in Minnesota face today are unique, and by sharing our stories with one another and the rest of our fellow Minnesotans, we can build a more united, secure, and vibrant community.”

“ADL is thrilled to partner with JCRC and our friends in the Somali-American community on this exciting and critical initiative,” said David Goldenberg, Midwest regional director of the ADL. “At a time when hate and extremism are rising in our country and Somali-American and Jewish communities are targeted by extremists, we must band together to protect our shared future. That starts with learning each other’s stories and enhancing interpersonal and intercommunal ties.”

Intersections Consulting, an enterprise founded by Somali-Americans Abdul Mohamed and Abdifarah Fatah with community building and creative storytelling experience in Minnesota, is also partnering with the JCRC and ADL in this effort.

“There is so much more that unites us than what sets us apart. By exploring those commonalities and broadcasting that message to those who need to hear it, we will be investing in our shared future as Minnesotans in important and necessary ways,” said Abdifatah Farah.

“Combating bigotry and bias is a responsibility that belongs to all of us. To do that, we must challenge ourselves to have conversations that may not always be comfortable,” added Abdul Mohamed.

“Temple Israel was proud to host the initial gathering for this initiative earlier this summer and is committed to remaining a partner for convening these critical conversations and pushing back against the rising hatred we are experiencing in our society,” said Rabbi Marcia Zimmerman, senior rabbi at Temple Israel, which hosted State of Hate: Examining the Rise of Anti-Semitism and Islamophobia on May 9, 2019.

Grant applications will be reviewed by a joint committee of JCRC, ADL and Intersections Consulting.

Please click here to view our Requests for Proposals. Applications are due November 15, 2019.


About the ADL: ADL is a leading anti-hate organization. Founded in 1913 in response to an escalating climate of anti-Semitism and bigotry, its timeless mission is to protect the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment to all. Today, ADL continues to fight all forms of hate with the same vigor and passion. ADL is the first call when acts of anti-Semitism occur. A global leader in exposing extremism, delivering anti-bias education and fighting hate online, ADL’s ultimate goal is a world in which no group or individual suffers from bias, discrimination or hate. 

About the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (JCRC): As the public affairs voice of the Jewish community since 1939, the JCRC fights antisemitism and prejudice, advocates for Israel, provides Holocaust education, promotes tolerance and social justice, and builds bridges across the Jewish and broader communities. 

About Intersections Consulting: Intersections Consulting is a locally primed and globally minded minority owned strategic agency driven to succeed through crafting unique approaches to diverse problems. Intersections Consulting is passionate about helping clients make culturally-tuned choices that will amplify engagement, stimulate new impactful direction, and generate robust strategies that effectively navigate through today’s modern business and social challenges.