About the JCF

The Jewish Community Foundation of Southeastern Wisconsin and Northern Illinois is the center of Jewish philanthropy of Southeastern Wisconsin and Northern Illinois.

The foundation has origins in 1914 as The Federated Jewish Charities in Kenosha Wisconsin. In 1938 it was reorganized as the Kenosha Welfare Fund and in 2006 the organization merged with its sister organization in Racine to become the Kenosha-Racine Jewish Welfare Fund. In 2012, the fund was renamed to The Jewish Community Foundation of Southeastern Wisconsin and Northern Illinois. The new name reaffirms the foundations regional membership reach.

Our purpose is to raise funds for Jewish philanthropic purposes. Among the endeavors we support are major Jewish institutions in North America, Israel and around the world including, but not limited to, the Jewish Federations of North America which receives at least 50% of our distributed funds. We also support Jewish education, youth and college services, and food pantries and social services in our own geographic area. A full list agencies supported can be found on the Organizations Supported page.

Why support the Foundation?

Tzedakah, charitable giving, is an important Jewish value. The word, Tzedakah ( ) does not mean “charity,” however, or that which comes from the heart. It means “righteousness.” We give because it is the right thing to do.

For this reason nearly every Jewish community has an organization similar to the JCF. In larger cities it may be called “The Federation,” a way of referring to a federation of Jewish philanthropies, and will usually sponsor social service agencies under Jewish auspices. In a smaller community it may be called a welfare fund or a foundation.

The JCF is the leader of Jewish philanthropy in our region. We provide a one-stop shop for giving where in one place the Jewish Community can stand together to provide support of Jewish and secular interests; locally, nationally, and for Israel.

Our all volunteer board operates according to best practices of governance in terms of transparency, financial management and ethics. The organization's extremely low cost(<.5%) provides a cost effective vehicle for giving. As a 501 c3 organization your support is tax deductable* *Consult your tax adviser to verify your personal tax situation.

Our annual campaign kicks off each fall with a brunch (lox and bagels!) and features interesting speakers.