Social Action

תיקון עולם
Tikkun Olam

Literally translates to "world repair" and has come to
connote social action and the pursuit of social justice.

 

The Social Action Committee (SAC) seeks opportunities, within our temple community, and in the wider areas of our towns, country and the world, for temple members to contribute to the work of tikkun olam, repairing the world, through mitzvot, good deeds. We work on projects and activities that address human needs, including food, shelter and security for families and children in our local and global communities.

We hope you will get involved in one of our many projects. New ideas are always welcome.

Direct Action

Family Table – Beth El is committed to delivering 40 cans of tuna and 40 cans of low salt vegetables to help Jewish families in need every month. Leave donations in the SAC closet, across from the main coat closets. Once a year Temple families help sort and deliver groceries. Susan Bernstein, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

High Holiday Food DriveWe conduct an annual food drive for families in need during the High Holidays. Food is donated to Family Table, the Belmont Food Pantry and the Boston Food Bank. Naomi Dworkin, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Second Sundays We provide an opportunity to join other Beth El members to participate in monthly community service projects. Details appear in the Temple's monthly and weekly bulletins. Amy Carol Rosenstein, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Mitzvah Day – May 15, 2011 – Participate in a wide variety of community service projects inside and outside the temple. There are a variety of projects that you can help out with on Mitzvah, like helping cook a meal for the homeless, working at a community garden, letter-writing for Amnesty International, sewing blankets for infants with special needs, and much more. Lori Lander, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Literacy Tutoring – Many members of the Beth El community tutor children in grades K-3 at Tobin Elementary School in west Cambridge as part of the Greater Boston Jewish Coalition for Literacy. More volunteers are needed - the time commitment is one hour per week from October to May. Training provided. Jodi Greenspan, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Project Ezra - A small group of Beth El volunteers prepare and serve Christmas dinner at the Center Club,  a clubhouse in Boston for adults with psychiatric disabilities.  Amy Rosenstein, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

EcoteamsKeep your New Year's Resolution to go on a low carbon diet. Join temple members to measure your family's carbon foot print and learn how to reduce it. You can be part of the climate change solution.  We're hosting two ecoteams - Thursday evenings beginning January 13th at 7:00 pm and Sundays beginning january 23rd at 10:00 am at the Temple.  Ecoteams will meet every other week for 5 sessions.  Want more information? See the flyer.  Have questions or want to join an eco team - call Jeri Weiss at 617-489-4119.

Advocacy

Greater Boston Interfaith Organization (GBIO) GBIO is involved in local grass roots organizing on a variety of regional issues.  Currently, we are focusing on supporting healthcare insurance legislation, an Aging with Dignity campaign, and supporting programs that contribute to youth development, including the physical and emotional safety of youth.

Tzedakh and Other Collections

Annual Fundraising Events – Each year we hold a fundraising concert, movie or coffeehouse. Recent recipients of the monies we have raised have included: Rabbis for Human Rights, the Southern Poverty Law Center/Klanwatch, Jewish World Watch, Habitat for Humanity and the Terezin Chamber Music Foundation. Other fund-raising efforts have helped purchase solar cookers and backpacks for refugees from Darfur. We also distribute monies from the Tzedakh Box outside the Sanctuary.

Hanukkah Gift Drive – Each year we collect Hannukah gifts for families in need served by Riverside Community Care. Judith Powsner, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Other Collections – In addition to our Family Table collections of vegetables and tuna, we collect cell phones for domestic violence victims, children's videos and DVDs for Franciscan's Hospital for Children, and travel size toiletries for local shelters. Drop off for donations are in the Schmooze Room and in SAC closet across from the main coat closets. We have also compiled a list of local organizations that will accept your donation or recycling of many, many different items. Copies are available in the SAC closet.

Worship

Social Action Shabbat - Each year we create a Social Action Shabbat service to share with the community.

When We Meet and More Info

The SAC has planning meetings the second Sunday of most months at 11:15 am in the upstairs meeting room. Everyone is welcome!  If you would like to learn more about the Social Action Committee, please contact Lori Lander (617-492-1469 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ).