The Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs (FJMC) Quality Club Award is one of the highest honors that can be earned by a Jewish Men’s Club or Brotherhood. The FJMC Quality Club Award says to both your club members, synagogue members and greater community that your Men’s Club or Brotherhood and its programs and activities demonstrate a level of excellence. The award, an engraved, 15 year, perpetual plaque, was developed to encourage Men’s Clubs and Brotherhoods to offer specific types of activities at the local, regional, and international level. Qualification for the 2023 / 2024 FJMC Quality Club Award will be based upon the quality and diversity of YOUR Men’s Club or Brotherhood programs and activities for the period May 1, 2023 through May 1, 2024.
The specific criteria to qualify for a 2023 /2024 FJMC Quality Club Award are still being finalized, however the great news is a that your Men’s Club or Brotherhood may already be doing almost everything necessary to qualify for the award. The following information will help to guide your Men’s Club or Brotherhood through the hypothetical activities of a “Quality Club”.
The first thing to do is save the date on your Men’s Club or Brotherhood 2023 / 2024 programming calendar to participate in the FJMC World Wide Wrap, to be held on SuperBowl Sunday morning (February 11, 2024) when Jewish Men and Women around the world will gather together to pray, learn, celebrate and share the mitzvah of wrapping Tefillin. Do it live, or do it on Zoom, or both – there are no wrong answers.
Next, save a spot on your Men’s Club or Brotherhood programming calendar to focus on November 2023 (Kristallnacht) and/or May 2024 (Yom Hashoah) and engage in a holocaust commemoration / educational program, such as distribution and lighting of FJMC Shoah Yellow Candles. Learn more about the Yellow Candle Program and view associated programming materials at: https://yellowcandle.fjmc.org/.
The next activity is easy one; have your Men’s Club or Brotherhood organize a Wellness program intended to provide physical health for your members and/or the greater community (https://fjmc.org/initiatives/wellness-initiative/), a Hearing Men’s Voices program (https://fjmc.org/initiatives/hearing-mens-voices/) or an Inclusion activity (https://fjmc.org/initiatives/inclusion/) such as a special needs Shabbat.
The FJMC is all about Club support and expansion; they want to meet you and they want YOUR CLUB to succeed. Invite an FJMC International or Regional representative to come to your Men’s Club or Brotherhood for a meet and greet, or as a speaker at your next Club meeting. Participate in an FJMC regional retreat, or an FJMC consultant-led regional or individual club training program. This can be live, or on Zoom, or both – there are no wrong answers. The FJMC and FloridaRegionFJMC.org have regional consultants available to help facilitate a training program for your Jewish Men’s Club or Brotherhood. Learn more at: https://fjmc.org/for-clubs/getting-help/.
Some examples of Club Programming activities that are indicative of a Quality Club include the FJMC Minyan of Comfort program, a collaborative program with synagogue clergy to develop an alternative Shabbat Experience as outlined in “Building Shabbat Community” program; a Joint Program with Sisterhood/Women’s League (almost every Men’s Club or Brotherhood already does this), conduct a Jewish Observance Program that includes active participation, such as the FJMC Hebrew Literacy program; Torah study with the Rabbi; selling Sukkah kits; Build-A-Pair, Program, or the Yad Shel Chai Program. Lead or participate in a Community Service Project to benefit your local community outside your congregation (deliver food to the needy; hold religious services at an assisted living home; collect books and toys and deliver to a group home; etc.); or a synagogue service project that enhances or benefits your synagogue or congregation (provide ushers for services; sort tallisim and/or siddurim to find those that are worn and need to be retired; etc.).
Other programming activities indicative of a Quality Club include organizing a Men’s Club Shabbat, a Keruv or Inclusion program. Try an activity that attracts younger members to your Men’s Club or Brotherhood such as a Daddy-Daughter Dance, rock climbing, rafting, Olympics, Father-child group sports event, attendance at a professional sports game or sponsor youth art contest. Consider a collaborate / joint “Program” with another Men’s Club or Brotherhood; host a “Steak and Scotch in the Sukkah”, a Pub night or “Beer and Bible” program.
Your Men’s Club or Brotherhood is likely engaging in many of these activities. Keep a written record of your Men’s Club or Brotherhood programs and activities from May 2023 through May 2024 and make them count towards qualifying for a 2023/2024 FJMC Quality Club Award.
Club Administration activities that are indictive of a Quality Club can include sending regular communications to your inform club members of activities and/or meetings (Your Club Facebook page, newsletter; email, website, etc.), maintain accurate membership records, produce and adopt an annual men’s Club or Brotherhood budget, publish (online or print) a calendar of planned club activities.
In the category of Regional and International Participation, criteria that are indicative of a “Quality Club” include participation by at least one member of your Men’s Club or Brotherhood leadership as elected International FJMC officer (i.e., Executive Committee member), an elected Regional FJMC officer or an active member of an International FJMC committee. There are many ways for your Men’s Club or Brotherhood to get involved on an FJMC Committee and any of the members of the FJMC Executive Committee are available to assist you at: https://fjmc.org/about/our-leadership/executive-committee/.
Your Men’s Club or Brotherhood can also participate directly in an activity internationally to promote or enhance Masorti Judaism – you can contribute mezuzot, FJMC books, siddurim, tallisim, tefillin, etc., to foreign congregations; correspond with foreign clubs or congregations to encourage their participation in the World Wide Wrap; contribute funds to Masorti synagogues or other institutions affiliated with the international Masorti/Conservative Movement….. the possibilities are limitless.
The Florida Region of FJMC wants to give every affiliated Jewish Men’s Club and Brotherhood the opportunity to earn the FJMC 2023 / 2024 Quality Club Award for your outstanding activities and programs. How can we help your Men’s Club or Brotherhood succeed and grow?
This message is brought to you by the Florida Region of the Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs (FJMC). We are part of a global confederation of over 200 Jewish Men’s Clubs and Brotherhoods representing over 20,000 members across the United States, Canada, Latin America, and beyond. Learn more about how your Jewish Men’s Club or Brotherhood can affiliate with the FJMC at: https://fjmc.org/for-clubs/affiliating-with-the-fjmc/.
The Florida Region of FJMC serves the needs of affiliated Men’s Clubs and Brotherhoods throughout the State of Florida. Get to know more about the FJMC Florida Region and our growing network of Jewish Men’s Clubs and Brotherhoods at www.floridaregionfjmc.org and please visit and LIKE our Florida Region FJMC Facebook Group at www.facebook.com/FloridaRegionFJMC.