TheNewJew Logo


My name is Maya Norton.

Welcome to The New Jew: Blogging Jewish Philanthropy.

Philanthropy, especially Jewish philanthropy, is my passion. I work in the nonprofit/philanthropy field in Israel and with Jewish communities abroad. Blogging helps me to refine my practice and think about issues in my direct field and beyond.

Please note that this is a individual blog, but in an effort to involve the community and address important issues in Jewish philanthropy, I frequently feature guest authors who are experts in their fields. The best example of this can be seen with the Big Idea Series in which 10 authors thus far have shared with us their proposals for ideas in Jewish social innovation.

You can also find me on my Facebook page at The New Jew: Microblog. Come and join the conversation!

What I Write About

Some of my primary topics are: best practice models in philanthropy, social entrepreneurship, donor decision-making, the nonprofit workplace, social responsibility, recommendations for improving  fundraising methods, opportunities for partnership in the Middle East, and of course Israel and the Jewish community.

My readers are federation executives and staff members, philanthropy professionals, people interested in learning more about Jewish giving and giving to Israel, and many others in between.

At present, the four primary issues of this blog revolve around Jewish philanthropy and innovation. They are:

  1. Jewish Philanthropy: What we can learn from giving in the Jewish world
  2. Israel Advocacy: Expanding the paradigms for supporting Israel in the Jewish community
  3. Jewish Communal Innovation: Ideas on how we can further advance and develop as a nation
  4. Jewish Service: Opportunities for pursuing mitzvot throughout the world by volunteering and other forms of service

Subscribe to The New Jew

FeedButtonYou can subscribe by e-mail or in a feed reader by clicking the sidebar icons. —>

Read My Most Popular Posts

Please click here to read featured posts from the community and here to read more about my other writing projects.

Learn more about this blog by clicking on my most popular posts:*

  1. Gaza Giving: Surfing for Peace with Dr. Dorian Paskowitz
  2. The Nonprofit Employee’s Top 5 List of Must Haves in the Workplace
  3. Trends in Philanthropy: Predicting the Future of Nonprofit Fundraising
  4. Cause-Based Viral Marketing: How Your Nonprofit Can Maximize Social Networking Tools
  5. Top 5 Must Haves for International Fundraising: Shamoon College Provides Best Practice Model
  6. Top Jewish Foundations and Their Philanthropic Giving
  7. Know Your Jewish Philanthropy: the Federations, the Joint, and the Jewish Agency
  8. Charity vs Philanthropy: Avoiding Relationships of Dependency
  9. Slingshot Releases “Resource Guide to American Jewish Innovation, 2007- 2008”
  10. “Words of Advice for Beginning Bloggers”

And the wildly popular: “Mel Brooks Starts New Foundation: Schmucks for Schmuck.”

[* This section will be updated shortly.]

Connecting With Me

As a lifelong learner, I am constantly reading, writing, and studying ways to improve my craft. Your feedback and suggestions about how I can enhance my content and writing to best fit your interests and priorities is most welcome.

Contact Me

Please don’t hesitate to contact me by leaving a comment or e-mailing: mayan80 [at] yahoo.com.

Additionally, as a professional freelance writer and editor specializing in Jewish fundraising, I would be happy to talk with you about freelancing opportunities.

I am blogging from Israel.

Am Yisrael Chai

==  Please be aware that I was on semi-sabbatical for a long time while taking care of my son at home. The current state of The New Jew reflects these past limitations.  ==


40 Responses to About

  1. Pamela says:


    You’ve got a great website/blog. I look forward to your continued success.

    Pamela Dubin Beaty

    • Moishela says:

      Discussion with Moishela (with his family)
      A Handicapped child
      3 Cheshvan 5775 (Oct 26, ’14)

      “The Noose Is Getting Tighter”

      The world has absolutely gone mad, absolutely mad. Murder, accidents, weather related deaths, riots, plagues, Mamash a very scary world. Every day something new. Every day something more bloody. Every day more and more deaths. Every day we become more and more frightened.

      The noose is getting tighter and tighter around us, and the worst part about it is that no one seems to feel it except a very few. Very few people feel it at all. Either they don’t want to feel it so they ignore it, or they are really in some very strong daze or under some kind of drug that keeps them from seeing what is happening. It doesn’t even have to be medication, although I would imagine that in the western world at least 50% of the people are on some kind of psychiatric medication. They drug themselves on Gashmius on materialism so they won’t know, so they won’t feel, so they won’t be afraid. What is happening is frightening because the world is beginning to feel the effects of being ruled by a group of absolute maniacs, of people that are evil to their bone. They are planning crazy things and thinking they can get away with it, thinking that they can turn the world into their private domain, that they can take the Jewish people and turn them into Goyim. Their greatest goal that they want to achieve is they want to destroy, to kill nine-tenths of the world population. What can I tell you? We Yidden are being targeted. Our faith is being targeted, and we must, must come back to Hashem in order to stop it.

      I have dreams, I have such frightening dreams every night. I see cities being blown up. I see all kinds of terrible things happening. I see wild men killing and plundering. I see planes shooting and bombing. I see people dying of thirst and hunger, and I cry and I cry. I am so nervous and so afraid, not for myself – for my family and for Am Yisroel, how terrible, how terrible. I’m not even giving you the details of what I see but it’s very very frightening! I don’t know how to pass on to my fellow Jews through what I am writing, the difficult things we still have to face.

      How can I beg? How can I plead with Am Yisroel to open their eyes, to get rid of the Gashmius, to stop looking like street people, to start looking again like Jews, to start acting again like Jews? I’m talking to the Frum. What else can I say to you? What else can I do? If you read over everything I’ve said to this point, you should already be doing Teshuva in the strongest way, but I see in the streets that people are buying and buying things that are not necessary. I see that they are making fancy parties and fancy Chasunas and things that are not necessary. I see and I feel that children are growing up to love, to lust after Gashmius. I see how we are eating like gluttons, but have become very very weak in our Mitzvos and it makes me cry. Now we are facing the most horribly difficult time in history and we’re messing around with nonsense.

      What can I say? What can I do? I’m only a young person with an old head and an old heart, but I can tell you this: you better straighten up fast. You better get your act together because the suffering is going to be unbelievable if not, and if you take yourself in hand then you can save yourself so much suffering, so much misery. Do you understand? People, do you understand? You can save yourselves so much suffering, but if not it will be unimaginable suffering. I’m begging you. I’m begging you. Put your trust in Hashem not in people, not in science, not in chief rabbis, or in heads of state. Put your trust only in Hashem, only in Hashem, only in Hashem. We have to be like the Yidden that left Mitzrayim and spent forty years in the desert. We have to be like that. We have to have that kind of trust of Hashem without question, no matter what happens, no questions asked. We must know in our hearts and our souls that it’s all for our good, it’s to help us go higher, to help us reach the next stage of Creation which is Olam Habah of Moshiach Tzidkainu, and our journey upwards, to total salvation, to completely become one with Hashem. That’s what I have to say.

      I’m afraid that my words have become useless because people have become used to listening to them, even though they are harsh and they are strong and people see around them terrible things happening, but they are getting used to it. They want their Gashmius more than they want to listen. So I will say a few more sentences to make sure you understand. Please, please do Teshuva. Change your way of life. Become Tzniusdik, the men and the women. Trust Hashem in everything. Don’t go looking outside of your Daled Amos for the Yeshua. The Yeshua is only with Hashem, only with Hashem. In the near future we are going to witness very bloody happenings, very frightening and very bloody. Here in Eretz Yisroel there will be more riots and more trouble, but in Chutz La’aretz it will be really bad, really bad.

      Between now and Chanukah we are going to have a rush of incidents all over the world, that will put great fear into most of the population of the world. You won’t know where to look first, up, down, left, right. Everywhere there will be trouble big big trouble. Hashem is trying to show us that the inevitable must be and that means that we are coming very close to the Geula Sheleima, and the hardest part of this birth is now and therefore you can either have an easy birth or a very difficult one. It’s your choice.

  2. thenewjew says:

    Thanks for your kind words, Pamela. They are especially appreciated coming from someone with so much experience and knowledge in the field.

    Best wishes,


  3. Hi Maya,

    We interviewed Tzvi Bisk on his most recent book. Would love to get placed on your Israeli Blog section. We will list your web site under links.

    Please check us out. Our web site is a labor of love and is a very busy site. We also encourage other Israeli’s with something to say to share their thoughts on our guest blog section.

    Be Well and Mazel Tov on the site.

    Steve Ornstein

  4. thenewjew says:

    Hi Steve (and Yoram),

    Consider it done. I am always glad to meet Israeli bloggers who I can learn from and partner with. Thanks for introducing yourself and your blog.

    I read Israelseen and enjoyed it- sure do hear you on that “labor of love.” I am wondering whether there is a difference between Israelseen.com and Israelseen.blogspot.com? Are you posting at both simultaneously and their appearance and organization is the only thing that differs?

    I am interested in talking to you about guest blogging for Israelseen. Drop me an e-mail at MNorton [at] TheNewJew.org if you are interested or just say hellok.

    Shabbat Shalom,


  5. Thanks for commenting on my blog! I think that its interesting that we are the only ones on wordpress talking about viral fundraising!

    I have a ton of other ideas I have yet to publish! I am curious to hear yours!


  6. thenewjew says:

    Hi Aaron,

    Very interesting! One possibility is that we are calling it “viral fundraising” and others might be using different names like “viral marketing.” I know that the viral conversation is on the tip of many tongues.

    I look forward to reading more from your interesting blog as it seems we have many interests in common. (Look me up on Facebook if you want to be further connected.)

    Warm regards,


  7. laura goldman says:

    Thanks for your support for the union. We are making progress in organizing and should be up and running in the New Year. No one is expecting freelancers to strike but there is strength in numbers. The first step is learning our rights. I am amazed at how many freelancers do not know the basics. We would like to stop the bad habit of 90 plus shotef payment terms. 30 days plus shotef seems more reasonable.

  8. thenewjew says:

    Best of luck, Laura. I look forward to hearing about your progress.

    Reference: “Israeli Freelancers Starting Union: Valuing the Written Word,”


  9. Anslov Workman says:

    You are living in a fools’ paradise.

    Israel became what it is through the theft of property and businesses and personal belongings from innocent people.

    The whole world knows the truth and is watching. Do you feel no shame?

  10. thenewjew says:


    I feel nothing but pride for the Jewish nation and Jewish people.


  11. godlessjew says:

    HI Maya,

    Thank you for the kind words about my article. Hope to see your comments on my blog more often.


    Your work on this blog is really impressive.

  12. Yoav Kaufman says:

    Hi Maya,

    I am a list manager at Negev Direct Marketing, we are a direct marketing comapny specializing in Jewish non-profit direct mail campaigns.

    Around two months ago I started a blog for our compnay called the Jewish Donor Blog.

    I read your blog often and I was wondering if you would be interested in putting a link to our blog on your blog under the Israeli and Jewish blogs area?

    I would be happy to add a link to your blog on our blog if you agree to add our link.

    Anyway, I hope you give the Jewishdonorblog.com a look and let us know what you think.


    Yoav Kaufman
    List Manager
    Negev Direct Marketing

  13. Maya Norton says:

    Dear Yoav,

    Thanks for your comment. I’ve added your blog to the blogroll under Jewish and Israeli blogs. I’d be appreciative if you would do the same.

    I’m glad you like my blog and believe we have much to learn from each other.

    Are you physically located in Be’er Sheva as your mailing address indicates?

    Please feel free to e-mail me at mayan80 [at] yahoo.com.

    Best wishes,


  14. Ruth Freedman says:

    Dear Maya and other readers
    I was wondering if you know about any foundations that might listen to an appeal to help the suffering of Israel’s street cat population by helping to pay for street cats to be trapped and neutered?

    Also, in Israel there is a desperate need to educate people in israel about animal welfare and we need funding for educational programs that woudl inform people about what is happening and encourage greater responsibility among pet owners. Hundreds of thousands of animals are abandoned and killed by vets each year because people decide they want a pet and then at some point discard them. Animal shelters are overflowing and conditions are often dire. Thousands of sweet, loving animals are left to live lonely desperate lives before being cruely killed due to overcrowding.
    People don’t understand the importance of neutering their pets to prevent the population explosion of unwanted cats and dogs that often end up lonely, abused and finally exterminated.
    Money is urgently needed to fund education programs that will raise awareness among Israel’s children of the misery and suffering of thousands and thousands of animals each year.

    This situation is immorral and unworthy of the Jewish state and could be contained, prevented, and alleviated if funds were available for educational programs and trapping and neutering schemes.
    if you have any ideas…
    please reply to my email: ruthfree@bezeqint.net

    many thanks

  15. AlexM says:

    I found your site on technorati and read a few of your other posts. Keep up the good work. I just added your RSS feed to my Google News Reader. Looking forward to reading more from you down the road!

  16. Maya Norton says:

    Thank you, Alex. Glad to have you here.

  17. Paul Kipnes says:

    Very interesting blog. Great stuff on it. I’m definitely following along in the future. Happy Chanukah.

  18. Weston Jolly says:

    Thanks for your blog and all that you are offering. While I’m not formally affiliated in Judaism, I came across an article in which some Jewish Philanthropic organization were offering “Grant’s” to new businesses.

    I’m an Inspirational Speaker and author and I was very impressed with this organizations mission statement or creed. While I can’t recall the organizations name I thought you might? I was exceedingly impressed as I remember that the gifts were transforming lives and that many of the recipients later became members to offers others the same special lift or assistance that they had personally received.

    Would you by chance be able to assist me in properly accrediting these supreme acts of love? As I remember the grants were primarily targeted to the Jewish community but not always which made the offer of unconditional love even more apparent.

    Thanks for anything that you might contribute.

    In honor and love,

    Weston Joly

    • Maya Norton says:

      Hi Weston,

      Thanks for reading. I’m glad to help, but I would need a bit more information first. Is there anything else about this organization that you can remember?

      ~ Maya

  19. elephant_seal says:

    Hi Maya,
    Your blog is very enlightening. I was wondering if you had any thoughts regarding Obama’s speech at Cairo University and extrapolated any possible implications (good, neutral or negative) for Israel and the Jewish people, either due to the speech itself or to his approach towards the Middle East in general.

  20. Esti says:

    I started a blog talk radio show, Jewish Shmooz Network, and I wanted to know if you would be interested in talking about what you do on the show?
    Hatzlacha in all you do!!

  21. ilanadavita says:

    This looks like a great blog. I have bookmarked it and will certainly come back.

  22. Hello Maya,

    I’m an Israeli journalist.

    I stumkbled over your blog. I noticed your interest in Israel advocacy.

    Check out Chelm-on-the-Med Onlilne at http://www.chelm-on-the-med.com.

    I’m the author of this news site, which I believe can help re-brand Israel using humor.

    You might add Chelm-on-the-Med to your list of favorites, under news outlets…and you might want to write bout this innovative idea.

    • Maya Norton says:

      Dear Daniella,

      Thanks for visiting The New Jew and good luck in your endeavor. I’ve checked out your site and appreciate the work you are trying to do. Please note that this blog is no longer active (see the most recent post).

      Shavua Tov,

      ~ Maya

    • Maya Norton says:

      Dear Daniella, sorry for the late reply; it seems my initial response to you at the time of your comment was swallowed.

      First of all, I’m sorry to tell you that I am no longer blogging– please see the most recent post (http://TheNewJew.wordpress.com), so the blog isn’t being updated.

      Secondly, we have “met” as bloggers and online writers before. I know you from your stories at the Green Prophet when you were writing about the Negev and a student at BGU. We communicated on this post that I picked up from you, although it was a long time ago and I certainly don’t expect you to remember.
      – “Israeli Environment: New Mall Seeks to Green the Negev,” link: https://thenewjew.wordpress.com/2009/07/07/israeli-environment-new-mall-seeks-to-green-the-negev/

      I’ve checked out Chelm on the Med and wish you luck with it and any branch of Israel advocacy that you pursue. Feel free to stay in touch.

      Wishing you well and hope you had a good Yom Ha’azmaut,

      ~ Maya

  23. Max Kohn says:

    Thank you to forward to Mark Charendoff.
    My best regards
    Max Kohn

    On http://www.maxkohn.com you can listen to Yiddish interviews and reportages for SBS Radio Yiddish Melbourne Australia http://www.sbs.com.au/podcasts/yourlanguage/yiddish/in/english Podcasting

    and much more. It’s an invaluable psychoanalytical anthropological material. Max Kohn (Max Cukierman Award for Yiddish culture 2006) is a French psychoanalyst and Professor at University Paris Diderot – Paris 7, correspondant of the Forverts in New York,USA http://yiddish.forward.com/ and of SBS Radio Yiddish, Melbourne, Australia, living in Paris who speaks fluently Yiddish and most of all who listens to it in it’s different aspects today as a living language. Famous people can be interviewed but also simple people and as far as they trust the interviewer, they can really talk about their life and their activities. Yiddish needs today the Internet to put isolated speakers in connexion in all the world. Internet can create new links for Yiddish but it has to be the best. The most important is not to speak a language but to listen to it.

  24. bobby harrisw says:

    shabbat shalom. i am jewish my name is bobby please call me Ariel. i am searching for airfare included with a volunteering program even though i am 49 years old but to much energy i have in i am also a 100% strongly a supporter of israel and its people and i stand fully with them. i am i am also planning to make aliyah to israel but held back, i have never been to israel in my own lifetime. and wanted to go but always failed and got that opportunity to go there or do anything. and while in free time from volunteering i could visit community where i want to move to and live work. and take hebrew lessons at a ulpan and to be able to do that i will pocket money to spend to eat you etc.. but just need airfare included with programs or someone who could help me fly to israel that may help too let me know thank you and shabbat shalom. kol tov

  25. bobby harrisw says:

    shabbat shalom. i am jewish my name is bobby please call me Ariel. i am searching for airfare included with a volunteering program even though i am 49 years old but to much energy i have in me i am also a 100% strongly a supporter of israel and its people and i stand fully with them. i am also planning to make aliyah to israel but held back, i have never been to israel in my own lifetime. and wanted to go but always failed and got that opportunity to go there or do anything. and while in free time from volunteering i could visit community where i want to move to and live work. and take hebrew lessons at a ulpan and to be able to do that i will pocket money to spend to eat you etc.. but just need airfare included with programs or someone who could help me fly to israel that may help too let me know thank you and shabbat shalom. kol tov

  26. Michael Podolski says:

    Hallo! I’m not sure that my appeal is in a right place, but i have to try anything i can.
    My name is Michael Podolski I’m living in Tel-aviv with my ill unemployed widower father. We are Russian imigrants.
    In Israel if a person doesn’t have an affluent parents and couldn’t secure a right profession or a successful business, his life became a very difficult survival. So i’m one of those guys. But now i have an opportunity. I was accepted to the university, phisiotheraphy foculty, and now i’m looking for a scholarships or a financial aid grants. Otherwise i’ll never be able to study, because i’m working mor then 10 hours a day. The local scholarships are too humble to survive, so i try a foreign sources as well.
    I was wondering if you dealing with such things and can help me, and if not, perhaps you know such organisations or persons that donor for Israelis.
    Thak you.

  27. mazaljudaica says:

    Hi, my name is Anna and I think your blog is excellent. Can we do a link exchange for our blogs? I have just added you.
    My blog is http://mazaljudaica.wordpress.com/

    My website is http://www.mazaljudaica.com. Please like us on Facebook! I would really appreciate it!
    Have an excellent day

  28. marshall says:

    Maya ….please remove me from all you email lists.
    Your “unsubscribe” at the bottom of the email doesn’t work.

    • Maya Norton says:

      Hi Marshall,

      No problem. I’ll look into it for you and get back as to what’s going on with the glitch.

      Any feedback for me, or you’re just not in the mood for these topics right now?

      ~ Maya

  29. […] About « The New JewMy name is Michael Podolski I’m living in Tel-aviv with my ill unemployed widower father. We are Russian imigrants. In Israel if a person doesn’t have an affluent … […]

  30. Lenard says:

    This is a topic that is near to my heart..
    . Many thanks! Exactly where are your contact details though?

  31. Lia says:

    Hey gyus.

    My request for your support is not for myself.

    My request for your support is for the whole Israeli nation.

    I believe that I don’t need to say much for you to understand, but in a few words:
    The will of this Israeli, Spanish musician is as strong as the will of our Israeli warriors.

    After the lack of success by the Israeli advocacy campaigns, I think that it is time for a something… a bit different.

    Romeo’s advocacy campaign is for Israel, for the Israeli warriors and for all of us eventually.

    An explanation about this campaign by Romeo:

    Artist page on facebook:

    In the name of the Israeli citizens, thank you!

  32. Okechi Geo Barth Eke (Dr). says:

    Dear sir,

    We have just inaugurated children resettlement centre in Owerri Town, Imo state, Nigeria to carter for the victims of insurgents attacks in the northern part of the country.

    Some of the children in the centre lost their parents as a result of the dreaded attack by the insurgents.

    In view of this therefore, the centre has limited resources to shoulder the enormous responsibilities before it.

    Furthermore, we shall appreciate your kind support of at least 5,000 dollars to enable us procure some medications to secure the lives of those who are critically under heavy weather.

    Please, feel free to contact the disease control director on phone no:- 08030714441 (code +234) for prompt attention.

    Your urgent response in this regard, will be highly appreciatedm.

    Stay blessed.

    Thank you.

    Sincerely yours

    Okechi Geoffrey Eke

  33. dor cohen says:

    I dugg some of you post as I cogitated they were very helpful extremely helpful

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: