Passing on a Gift of Vision

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Women of Vision welcomed its 500th member — a gift from a mother to her daughter.

Women of Vision, the permanent Jewish Women’s Foundation of the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia, was established in 1994 by 100 women seeking a hands-on experience in charitable giving.
 
Last week, Women of Vision welcomed its 500th member.  Making the occasion even more special: the membership was a gift from longtime Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia leader and Women of Vision member Esther Kaplin to her daughter, Simi Kaplin Baer, also a very committed Jewish Federation supporter.
 
When the question of what birthday present Kaplin should get her daughter was being discussed at the Women’s Philanthropy “WE” event a few weeks ago, close family friend Rabbi Lynnda Targan, Women of Vision’s membership chair, suggested the membership. Both Kaplin and Baer loved the idea.
 
Kaplin, who joined Women of Vision in 2011, became even more involved in the group this year when she joined the Grants Committee. “We are a family that believes in community and giving back,” says Kaplin, whose husband is Jewish Federation leader Marc Kaplin. “This is a great way for Simi to be part of something that’s very special.”
 
Baer agrees. “Women of Vision provides a platform to be involved with the work that Jewish Federation does on a more in-depth level,” she says. “Most of the time, I’m making a general gift and leaving it up to lay and professional leadership to decide where the money is spent. Additionally, as a daughter and a mother of a girl, I’m particularly interested in the work that Women of Vision does to empower girls and women.”
 
“I don’t know life without Jewish Federation,” continues Baer. “My brother, Andy, and I are third-generation Jewish Federation supporters and participants. My grandmother was a
 
Lion of Judah and wore her pin with great pride. My parents have been involved as long as I can remember. There is something special about having the opportunity to make real change with my mother by my side. I hope to share that opportunity with my daughter, Alexa, some day.”
 
Women of Vision’s members have all made one-time gifts that enable the foundation each year to make significant grants; each member can vote on how grants are distributed. Women of Vision grants promote health and well-being, educational and leadership development and economic security for Jewish women and girls locally and in Israel. 
 
For more information on Women of Vision, call Susan Lundy at 215-832-0849 or visit: jewishphilly.org/wov.

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