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March 8, 2022

How Revenue is Spent at the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (2020)

by Anne Paddock

The International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ) is a tax-exempt, non-profit 501 (c) 3 founded by a rabbi in 1983 as a way to “bless Israel and the Jewish people around the world with humanitarian care and life-saving aid” while “building bridges between Christians and Jews.”

How is revenue spent at IFCJ?  The short answer is that about half of revenue is spent on grants to Jewish organizations – in the US and in Israel – while the other half is spent on fundraising, printing and postage, television and radio airtime, staff compensation, fees for services, office-related expenses, and travel.  For more detail, read on.

Based in Chicago, Illinois, IFCJ raised $158 million in 2020 (compared to $118 million in 2019 and $119 million in 2018), most of which came from contributions, gifts, and grants.

Expenses totaled $132 million ($26 million less than the organization raised) and can be categorized as follows:

  • $71 million (45% of revenue):  Grants
  • $32 million (20% of revenue):  Printing,Postage, TV and Radio, Telemarketing, Adv & Prom
  • $13 million (8% of revenue):  Compensation
  • $ 8 million (5% of revenue):  Fees for Services
  • $ 8  million (5% of revenue):  Office-Related Expenses

Using the above information, every $100 in revenue was spent as follows:

$100:  Revenue

-$ 20: Printing, Postage, TV, Radio, Programs, Telemarketing, Advertising and Promotion

-$  8:  Compensation

-$  5:  Fees for Services

-$  5:  Office-Related Expenses

-$ 38: Subtotal: Organizational Expenses

 $ 62: Remaining Revenue

-$ 45:  Grants

$   17:  Remaining Revenue:  To General Fund

As illustrated above, the largest expense for the IFCJ is grants, which totaled $71 million in 2020.

GRANTS

Part IX, Statement of Functional Expenses reports IFCJ made $46 million in grants to domestic organizations and $25 million in grants to foreign organizations.  However, Schedule F, Part 1 reports $48 million in grants to foreign organizations, of which $47 million was to Hakeren L’Yedidut, which operates as the Israeli representative of the IFCJ in Israel.  Schedule I, Part II, reports 9 grants greater than $5,000 totaling $23.5 million were made to 9 organizations in the US primarily for food and humanitarian support:

  • $10.1 million: The Federation of Jewish Communities of the CIS
  • $ 5.0 million:  The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee
  • $ 3.9 million: Friends of the IDF
  • $ 2.0 million:  Colel Chabad
  • $ 1.0 million:  Chamah
  • $ 0.6 million:  Tikva Corporation
  • $ 0.5 million:  Jewish Agency for North American Council
  • $ 0.4 million:  Friends of United Hatzalah
  • $ 15,000:  American Friends of Tiev Jewish Community

So, it appears that nearly all grants of the IFCJ were made to Jewish organizations. In addition, it appears that $48 million was awarded in grants to foreign entities and about $24 million was awarded to domestic organizations.

FUNDRAISING

The IFCJ participates in a variety of fundraising methods (i.e. mail, internet, e-mail, phone, and in-person solicitations and also solicitation of non-government grants) but relies primarily on direct mail. Schedule G, Part I reports outside organizations raised $77.2 million, retained $5.5 million, netting IFCJ $68.2 million but mathematically, this is incorrect.  If IFCJ netted $68.2 million, then retained fees were $9 million, or about 15% of what they raised.

COMPENSATION

Compensation is the second largest expense. 129 employees received $13 million in compensation, which equates to an average compensation of $101,000.  However, only 24 employees received more than $100,000 with the most highly compensated employee reported to be Yael Eckstein, whose total compensation was reported to be $696,072.  

NET ASSETS

IFCJ had $61 million in net assets at the end of 2020 (compared to $32 million at the beginning of the year). This increase is attributable to not spending as much as the organization raised ($26 million) and also net unrealized gains on assets ($3 million).

In summation, IFCJ appears to primarily raise money to support Jewish organizations, primarily in Israel but also in the US.  The organization relies heavily on fundraisers with about half of the revenue coming from these outside organizations.  However IFCJ spends heavily for these dollars spending $32 million in printing, postage, advertising, promotion, television and radio ads, and telemarketing fees.   About half of revenue is awarded in grants while the other half is used to support the organization (i.e. pay employees, fundraise, pay office-related expenses and fees, etc) and increase the general fund.

To read the IRS Form 990 (2020), click here.

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