What is your Mission?
Leichtag Foundation honors the legacy of Lee and Toni Leichtag through igniting and inspiring vibrant Jewish life, advancing self-sufficiency and stimulating social entrepreneurship in coastal North San Diego County and Jerusalem.
Since its inception in 1991, the Leichtag Foundation has granted over $145 million to 496 different organizations. Of this amount, over $130 million has been granted since becoming independent in late 2007. About 21% have stayed in Encinitas.
What do you offer to the community?
Leichtag Foundation makes a positive impact in both North San Diego County and Jerusalem by advocating for systemic change, convening partners, strengthening grantee capacity, developing talent, leveraging resources, and forging connections between strategic areas.
The center of the Foundation’s physical operations is Leichtag Commons, a 67.5-acre agricultural property in Encinitas that is also home to The Hive, a nonprofit co-working and professional development hub, with currently over 30 Jewish, environmental, agricultural, and social justice nonprofits and social enterprises working together under one roof. Leichtag Commons is also home to Coastal Roots Farm (CRF), a nonprofit Jewish community farm and education center that provides organic produce for vulnerable communities in addition to hosting camps, educational programs, and events that celebrate farming, Jewish holidays, social justice, and Jewish wisdom. Last year, CRF grew nearly 80,000 pounds of organic food for more than 45,000 people using regenerative agriculture that reverses the impacts of climate change.
In 2018, Leichtag Foundation launched Jerusalem Philanthropic Initiatives (JPI), whose mission is to advance civil society and philanthropy in Jerusalem. Through efforts such as the Jerusalem Model, JPI works with civil society organizations, partner funders and other stakeholders to magnify impact in the realms of social cohesion, diversity and inclusion and transformational change.
What is currently your biggest focus?
In October, Leichtag Foundation’s partner Impact Cubed launched the Israel Emergency Grassroots Response Initiative. Through networks and trust built with leaders on the ground, Impact Cubed has special expertise in making change happen and getting services to those who need it most in trusted, effective, culturally competent ways. On October 7th, grassroots changemakers of all sectors in Israel became first responders in the face of catastrophe and devastation. Because of our 10+ years of experience working in the field of bottom-up change, Leichtag Foundation and Impact Cubed can quickly leverage resources for trusted, on-the-ground first responders where it is needed the most. Leichtag Foundation has supported the Initiative and our longstanding grassroots partners since October 7. Impact Cubed has provided regular updates on the shifting priority needs of leaders on the ground so that community members can stay informed and pivot their support through the Initiative accordingly.
What are your upcoming programs?
The Hive hosts monthly professional development workshops online and in-person. The Hive’s Fundraising Fridays offers an informal, virtual (and very popular!) hour for local colleagues in philanthropy to share advice on fundraising matters in partnership with NCPC and AFP San Diego. Find all upcoming events here.
What do you benefit most from being a member of NCPC?
Each of us at Leichtag Foundation appreciates the capacity building opportunities for our region’s social impact professionals and organizations that lead to a stronger field. We are also grateful for the collaborations and partnerships that enhance the work we do and the outcomes we achieve.
Learn more at https://leichtag.org