Keshet Inc

Rating: 4.93 stars   136 reviews

Issues: Civil Rights, LGBTQ

Location: 284 Amory Street Jamaica Plain MA 02130 USA

Mission: Keshet is a national grassroots organization that works for the full equality and inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Jews in Jewish life. Led and supported by LGBT Jews and straight allies, Keshet strives to cultivate the spirit and practice of inclusion in all parts of the Jewish community. We began as a small, grassroots group working for change in the Greater Boston area, and we are now a national organization with offices in the Bay Area and Denver, in addition to our national office in Boston.
Programs: Build Community for LGBT Jews Support Families Train Jewish Leaders for LGBT Inclusion Fight for LGBT Civil Rights Produce Jewish LGBT Resources
2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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EIN 48-1278664
617.524.9227
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Community Reviews

Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

10 people found this review helpful

I was an intern at Keshet for a summer. I learned more about contributing to a community and the value of good leaders allowing those with passion and movtivation to move projects forward than at any other place in my employment experience thus far. I am eternally grateful for the guidance of Orly and Idit, and the trust they showed me over the course of the summer. The mission of this organization is central to Jewish communal development, but their impact is much wider, and constantly reminds people of the power of dual-identity politics, issue-focused campaigns and the importance of one-to-one connections! Keshet was my gold at the end of the rainbow!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my own life, and in the lives of so many disenfranchised members of a community, young and old.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the wonderful appreciation everyone in this office offered me.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

challenged, challenging and incredibly willing to help those who are struggling to find a voice for themselves.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

change the way members of certain faiths react and interact with those who are minorities within their midst.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2007-8-01

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

7 people found this review helpful

Largely due to Keshet, I can walk into many synagogues and Jewish institutions and feel like there's a good chance there will be more acceptance of LGBT Jews, and more knowledge about us. I can trust Keshet to do excellent work, to represent me and other LGBT folks well, to care deeply about each person, LGBT and straight, to understand the history of oppression, and to convey that respectfully and in a way that can be heard by potential allies. This is an outstanding organization for social justice!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

many synagogues and other Jewish organizations.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

have Idit as a great model!

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the good thinking and warm friendliness.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

wonderful.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

save the world.

Ways to make it better...

I had volunteered more.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

I imagine financial need.

One thing I'd also say is that...

this organization is a model for courage and excellence.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-1-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

8 people found this review helpful

In 2000, faith became a much larger part of my life, and I needed a way to integrate that with my life’s work. As a transgender leader, it meant the world to me when Idit Klein asked me to come and work with Keshet – to help make Keshet and its work trans welcoming and inclusive from the beginning. Together we founded Keshet’s Transgender Working Group (TWiG). Through Keshet, and its role in the Interfaith Coalition for Transgender Equality, I’ve been a part of so much wonderful Jewish and interfaith work around trans issues – so much tikkun olam.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the Jewish community and far beyond, locally (Massachusetts), nationally, and internationally (especially because of our film "Hineini").

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

finally being able to combine my faith and my social justice work.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

I'm not sure that I understand this question.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

go a long way towards 'putting itself out of business' in a good way. There will always be a need for Jewish GLBT organizations. However, there's a critical need for education in the Jewish community and everywhere else, especially re: transgender.

Ways to make it better...

there were more funding available for transgender work, from Jewish and other sources.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

one is, of course, the local and other economic crises.

One thing I'd also say is that...

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-6-01

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

10 people found this review helpful

Keshet (rainbow) is a worthwhile organization that does amazing work in advocating for Jewish LGBT community. While their origins were local services in the Boston area, they now work other groups to offer services nationwide and around the world. I had the honor to attend a three-day national workshop on creating a safe and supportive safe for teens which I have brought back to my synagogue. In fact, I have taught a film and accompanying curriculum on the issue of homosexuality and Judaism that Keshet produced. Further, Keshet has been instrumental in helping my synagogue community become an advocate for the LGBT community. On a personal note, having been torn about my own identity for many years, it was the confidence and resources that I got from Keshet's workshop that convinced me to come out.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my own ability to define myself as gay and in the faces of my teens who have come out and/or become advocates for equality, particularly in a Jewish context.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

try to facilitate opportunities for past workshop participants to stay in touch on a formal level. I would also work to create programs and resources in other areas of the country or partner with already established groups in these areas.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the confidence I have gained in teaching about and advocating for LGBT equality. As a young professional who works with teens, gender and sexuality is a hot topic. I have a fantastic knowledge base to be an effective teacher on this important topic.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

amazing individuals who are not working with this organization for a paycheck. They are motivated and empowered to create an LGBT community, to fight for LGBT rights and equality, and to empower teens and future leaders to be advocates on this issue.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

do anything! It would expand the social programming locally and in other areas. It would also facilitate opportunities for lay leaders to participate to in workshops and seminars.

Ways to make it better...

I found Keshet earlier in my life! For too long I could not define my sexual orientation and I was not comfortable with myself. Thanks to Keshet, I gained valuable professional tools and the invaluable opportunity to grown on a personal level.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

financial, like any other nonprofit. Aside from money, this organization struggles for validity in certain areas. In less progressive geographic areas, a gay rights group has toubles. In more traditional religious communities, the same problems exist.

One thing I'd also say is that...

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-6-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

10 people found this review helpful

Keshet is an amazing organization that I have had the privilege to work with several times. Each time, I have been witness to the transformative and healing power of the educative work it does by helping some people to feel visible and appreciated for the first time, while helping other people to struggle through their own questions and barriers to become more open-minded. I've seen educators who have gone through a Keshet training take their new learnings and understandings into their own classroom to create safer, more inclusive, more sensitive learning environments.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the way that people who have gone through Keshet's trainings are able to take their learnings with them, and use them in their own lives.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

fall over, because there is so much work to do!

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

meeting the people who work at the organization because they are passionate about the work they do.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

passionate, interested, diverse and friendly.

Ways to make it better...

?

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

getting people to initially understand WHY Keshet's work is important to them (as soon as they sign on, they learn immediately).

One thing I'd also say is that...

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-1-01

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

12 people found this review helpful

Keshet is an amazing organization that really manages to balance meeting the needs of its members and local community while bringing important messages and advocacy to a wider community. The organization is brave, fearless, and principled.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

constantly exceed targets and expectations.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

hand it over to Idit Klein, she's the best.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

they keep it real.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

smart, energetic, and devoted.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

change the world.

Ways to make it better...

there was less homophobia in the world --but that is why we have keshet and these other great organizations.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

its too small for the job it has in front of it and this is tough economy for growing an organization.

One thing I'd also say is that...

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-6-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

11 people found this review helpful

Keshet does a great job building relationships between the LGBT and mainstream Jewish communities. It's education and outreach programs are first rate.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

they value my expertise.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

warm and welcoming.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

change the way the entire Jewish community sees its LGBT members.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-5-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

12 people found this review helpful

Keshet is a wonderful and diverse organization that makes a huge difference in the lives of LGBTQ Jews and allies of all ages by providing educational, social, cultural and organizing for social justice in a wide variety of settings.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

helping people of all ages appreciate and support the LGBTQ members of Jewish community and their allies.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

probably be less effective than those currently running things.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Thinking creatively about LGBTQ inclusion.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Diverse and talented

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Help make this world a much better and inclusive one.

Ways to make it better...

If II participated more actively.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Recognition from more mainstream organizations

One thing I'd also say is that...

Keshet is a very special organization that has yet to reach it's full potential.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-6-01

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

12 people found this review helpful

As a non-profit agency that serves families, we had Keshet review all of our promotional materials and website to make sure that we were being welcoming and inclusive. They suggested some word changes which we incorporated and have increased the number of GLBT families we serve.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

its collaboration with other CBO's in our community.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

how non-judgemental it is and how it educates the general community in ways to be welcoming and inclusive.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

all first rate.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

promote tolerance among all commmunities.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008-12-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

13 people found this review helpful

In 1981 I lost my job for a national Jewish organization because of my identity, a lesbian. Today Keshet is providing leadership, adovacy and training for that organization and others to ensure that our Jewish community grows beyond 'tolerating' LGBTQQI, to embracing, celebrating all. I am a social worker, Jewish educator, community activist and leader in my midwest LBGTQQI community with over 3 decades or professional experience. Participating in Keshets training program, it's master educator training program and then bringing their work into my community has been one of my rewarding personal and professional experiences. The Keshet staff work with a high standard of professional work ethics and practice. The trainings were hands on and provided participants with tools that can easily be used in synagogues and Jewish youth groups and schools. Their community organizational approach is fundamental to their successful approach.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the difference between Jewish educators and clergy from the beginning of their national training program and at the end. The shift in these participants was tranformational.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

hire someone to assist Keshet to take their work to the next step on the natioal level.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Working and learning side by side with a broad age range of professionals who also represented the entire spectrum of LBGTTQI and straight allies.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

dynamic, passionate, professional, interesting, personable, inspirational

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

work on buidling a grass roots national effort utilizing training participants, collaborating with other national and international Jewish organizations and LGBTQQI organizations.

Ways to make it better...

The organization modeled their Jewish identity and expression by including Jewish ritual and activities along side the training materials.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

balancing programming in the Boston area with the potential to have impact on the national level while the need is great, the workers are too few and the dollars are hard to secure in this economy and non profit climate.

One thing I'd also say is that...

Thanks for everything.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-2-01

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