Atlanta Jewish innovators from the Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta were inspired recently by Christian social entrepreneurs who weaved Jewish wisdom into their businesses. The Learning Journey, organized by Jodi Mansbach, JFGA chief impact officer, brought the Jewish group to Plywood Presents earlier this month for the annual gathering of Plywood People, an Atlanta nonprofit that drives startups dedicated to good works. Plywood Presents was held Aug. 1-2 at Atlanta Symphony Hall.
The Jewish group heard from Sackcloth & Ashes, a company founded by a gentile that sells blankets to benefit local homeless shelters. The company name was inspired by Jewish mourning rituals. The Christian founder of Charity: Water, which provides clean, safe drinking water to people in developing countries, ended his presentation with a quote from Pirkei Avot, which means chapters of the fathers.
Some of the lessons from the event were: partner with like-minded companies; and have a short tagline and a simple story.
The Plywood People stories and pitches are a great model for the Jewish community, Mansbach stated in the JFGA’s Aug. 14 newsletter. “They’re showcasing people who are trying to solve big and small challenges in our world. I love the optimism, creativity and support of this community.”