​Count Me INdy: 2017 Indianapolis Jewish Community Study



“How many Jews are there in the greater Indianapolis area?”  We all “know” the answer.  For more then seven decades the answer has been 10,000.  Of course that number does not account for the changes in our community.  Although we are interested in finding out how many Jewish families are located in Greater Indianapolis, another main objective is to understand the programming and planning needs for the future.  The study will give a voice to our community and a better understanding of services our agencies and organizations can provide to achieve maximum impact in Greater Indianapolis.   We are excited about this opportunity to find out more about the people whom the Federation, its agencies, synagogues and other organizations serve and how we can all connect better and strengthen our community. 


We are partnering with Ira M. Sheskin, PhD., a demographic researcher who has worked on many similar studies for Jewish Federations throughout the U.S.  Dr. Sheskin has been engaged to lead the Jewish Community study committee in formulating and implementing the survey, which will be used by a professional survey company to gather the information during phone interviews.  Gigi Marks Felsher, a past president of the Federation, has agreed to take on the role of Chair of our 2017 Jewish Community Study.  


A local Jewish community study is a research, community-building and policy-oriented project. It is designed to understand the demographic, social and Jewish characteristics and needs of the Jewish population. The study will cover the basic demographics such as age, geography, gender, presence of children, educational level, and income.   It will also have questions about Jewish connections like organizational membership, attitudes towards the Jewish community and Jewish education, synagogue affiliation, and connection to Israel.  The study will feature questions about our social and human service needs; for example, our community’s needs for senior services, employment resource support, and financial assistance.


Starting the last week of April professional surveyors may call your home or cell phone.  The caller I.D. on your landline will say “Count Me Indy,”  and the phone number on your cell phone will be 317-981-2303.  All telephone numbers are randomly selected and answers will be treated anonymously. We encourage you to set up a contact named “Count Me Indy” with the phone number 317-981-2303 so your cell phone will remind you who is calling!   Interviewers will not know your name or address and there will be no solicitation of funds.


If you would like to learn  more about how community studies are conducted, check out this main resource, the Berman Jewish Data Bank, at www.jewishdatabank.org​. Questions? Please contact Sheila Yuckman at syuckman@jfgi.org.