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REALITY Program Update

Important FAQs about the closing phase of REALITY.

Thank you for being part of REALITY.

Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Philanthropies has made the difficult decision to end the REALITY program. Read the official announcement.

Below are FAQs about this transition. We invite you to read them and reach out to the REALITY Team if additional questions arise. Some of the answers we know; others we are still figuring out. We will update this page as we learn more details.

We appreciate your patience as we navigate this phase of our journey together. 

General FAQs

Why is Schusterman Family Philanthropies ending REALITY?

In the United States, Schusterman Family Philanthropies is transitioning away from running programs that directly engage individual leaders. Instead, it will devote its resources in the U.S. toward grantmaking in organizations across six core issue areas.

Schusterman believes it can make the most impact and add the most value as a grantmaker by investing in the expertise in the fields it supports. It will continue to fund organizations focused on Israel travel.

REALITY has been an enormous success. We are incredibly proud of what REALITY accomplished, the 3,000+ leaders who participated, and how much the program contributed to the field of Israel travel. We know REALITY’s impact will reverberate for years to come.

When will REALITY programming officially end?

We will end all programming by June 30.

You mentioned that Schusterman is exploring the possibility of a grantee continuing to run REALITY.  Can you please explain more?  

We are in conversations with an organization that specializes in Israel travel to see if REALITY can fit with their offerings. The discussions are still taking place. Once we know more information, we will share it with you. 

Will the REALITY team continue working at Schusterman even though the program is ending?  

As part of ending the program, our team—Alicia, Laura, Esther, Caroline, Debra, Britney, Danielle and Allison—will transition out of the organization. We are grateful for Schusterman’s generosity and support during this transition. 

The wind-down of REALITY, including the bulk of the work and staff transitions, will happen by June 30.   

What is happening with the Schusterman Fellowship?

Since 2015, Schusterman has run the Schusterman Fellowship to support leaders working in Jewish nonprofits and Israeli civil society. Like REALITY, the Schusterman Fellowship will end by June 30.

For REALITY alumni who are also Schusterman Fellows, you received a separate email sharing more details.

What is happening with ROI Community?

In Israel, Schusterman's grantmaking aims to strengthen Israel as a secure homeland for the Jewish people, a thriving democracy and an inclusive society that cares for its most vulnerable. Alongside the organization's grantmaking, Schusterman will continue to operate ROI Community with a narrower focus on supporting the organization’s Israel-related grantmaking priorities and post-October 7 relief and recovery efforts.

For REALITY alumni who are also part of ROI Community, you received a separate email sharing more details.

Community Experiences

Will we still meet in person and/or virtually?  

We strongly encourage you to continue the meetups you have already been organizing in your hubs and at conferences and events. We will not host REALITY gatherings after June 30. 

We are working on plans for an opportunity to reflect on and honor REALITY together before the end of June. We will let you know as soon as we have more details.  

Will the scheduled REALITY Poland global journey still happen? 

Yes, the REALITY Poland trip will happen as planned, May 20-25.

What about the Learning and Healing Journey in Washington, D.C.?

The REALITY Poland trip will be our final journey. We will not host the Learning and Healing Journey or any future journeys beyond June.  

What will happen to the REALITY WhatsApp groups?  

Many REALITY WhatsApp groups, including the regional and affinity-based WhatsApp groups, are managed by individual REALITY alums. We hope these groups will continue to serve as a meaningful point of connection and an outlet to share milestones, resources, job opportunities, requests, etc. 

For the Israel journey WhatsApp groups that are administered by REALITY staff, we hope to transition them to interested alums. If you are interested in serving as the group’s administrator, please reach out to the REALITY Team ([email protected]). 

We will close any group that has not been taken over by June 30. 

Funding and Payments

Can I still apply for microgrants?  

Our microgrant funding is no longer available. 

Can I still apply for OneTable funding? 

Yes, you may continue to apply for OneTable Shabbat dinner grants if you convene your dinners and submit documentation by May 31. 

What happens if I have already been approved for microgrant or OneTable funding and have not yet requested reimbursement or payment?  

We will honor financial commitments for all reimbursement documentation submitted by May 31.

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