Through the generous support of our initial funders, the Nathan Cummings Foundation, the Righteous Persons Foundation, and the Walter and Elise Haas Fund, Joshua Venture Group began testing a model designed to empower young leaders with the resources and tools to build influential projects that would reinvigorate Jewish communities through identifying and addressing unmet needs. The first two cohorts of eight Fellows founded organizations such as Matan, Storahtelling, Sharsheret, and Keshet , game-changing organizations that have evolved from marginal upstarts into thriving organizations embedded into the fabric of Jewish life.
After two successful cohort cycles, Joshua Venture suspended its operations to reflect on its work and to refine its model. In 2008, the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, the Lippman Kanfer Family Foundation, the Nathan Cummings Foundation, and the Stanford and Joan Alexander Foundation re-launched Joshua Venture Group with a new, independent board of directors; an experienced and dynamic executive director; and a venture capital model that holds Fellows accountable for their performance and for the judicious use of funds.
Since then, Joshua Venture Group has invested in three two-year cohorts comprised of 22 Fellows total. These Fellows are now running some of the most cutting-edge non-profits in the Jewish community, including G-dcast, Bible Raps, and the Kavana Cooperative.
Like our Fellows, Joshua Venture Group continues to evolve. To build on the success of our flagship Dual Investment Program, Joshua Venture Group now offers the Partnership Platform, an opportunity for established organizations to invest in the development of emerging leaders and their innovative start-ups to help them fulfill their philanthropic visions. In addition, we continue to support our alumni and other Jewish innovators through ongoing professional and network development opportunities such as The Collaboratory.
Through Joshua Venture Group’s programs, we are cultivating the Jewish leaders of tomorrow.