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August 14, 2017 1:53 pm

How the Jewish National Fund Helps Preserve Israel’s Historic Beauty

avatar by Micah Stevens

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The Carmel forest along the Israel National Trail, with the trail’s marker on the rock. Photo: Dov Greenblat.

The media is a very powerful tool when used in the right manner. It can help an organization build support for its cause, fundraise, build membership and infrastructure and reach audiences all across the world.

The Jewish National Fund (JNF) has embraced the power of the media, and has seen enormous success in its mission and in membership growth as a result.

The JNF was created to protect land that was originally given to the Jewish people — through both conservation and political activism. In 2002, the JNF won the Israel Prize for its conservation and land protection efforts, as well as its efforts to repopulate the forests of Israel. And since its founding, JNF has used the media to help achieve its goals.

Before JNF came into being, various past governmental policies (including those in the pre-Israel British Mandate) blocked environmental protection and conservation efforts. Many of these policies also polluted Israel’s resources, including its rivers and waterways.

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Since its creation, JNF has worked with the Israeli government to help the Jewish state protect, retain and acquire the ownership of land — and it has used the media to help bolster these efforts.

The JNF has also helped advance scientific research in Israel — especially in the field of forestry, as well as to promote tourism in the nation. The JNF has used the media in all of these ventures to promote its activities, and build support for its cause.

The JNF has also used the media to help people tell their stories about working to protect the forests and lands of Israel, which has built further support for our efforts. People are more eager to participate in a cause when they feel the positive impact that their activities have on society, as well as on them as individuals.

Community-Based Organizations (CBO) should use the media to help fundraise and to win support from donors and constituencies — just like JNF has done. CBOs should embrace strategies that involve the community, and promote activism among members of society. The JNF has shown that using the media can help social justice organizations build support for their worthy causes.

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