Social Action


"Let justice well up as waters and righteousness as a mighty stream." ~ 
Book of Amos

Our goal is to engage members of the Beth El community in activities of tikkun olam -- making the world whole for the good of humanity. Emphasizing the "action" in social action, the Beth El community creates and participates in deeds and projects to effect positive, measurable change. 
 

The Green Team

Beth El is now working towards a GreenFaith energy Shield. We have lots of volunteer opportunities to help green our synagogue and our congregation. Help reduce Beth El energy use!

Act at your Faith Community – take steps to reduce energy use in your facility
Act at Home – distribute a household energy checklist and commitment form, so our members can save energy at home
Advocate – call on the government to take action on climate change 

Email Naomi Janowitz or Ted Obbard.


​Interfaith Connection

"My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together." Desmond Tutu

At Beth El we have been working for some time to establish links with other faith communities as well as connections within the Jewish community. We welcome everyone to participate in the many interfaith events which are happening in our wider community. If you are interested in helping to foster and plan connections please contact Caroline Lehman. Currently, the First Congregational Church is using our sanctuary. They much enjoyed being able to sample latkes at our Chanukah bazaar.  We plan to have some joint events. This year, we have had a few discussion events with Congregation Netivot Shalom and The Pacifica Institue (who are a group of Turkish Muslims), preparing and sharing an Iftar dinner as well as a community Thanksgiving dinner. 

Here are the upcoming events:
January 12:  An evening interfaith discussion with the Pacifica Institute and Netivot Shalom on comparing the Jewish/Muslim rituals associated with death.

We are planning a Beth El interfaith Havdallah event for Saturday, February 4. If you know of any other interfaith events happening please email camlehman@gmail.com and we can post them here.

 

Beth El Actively Welcomes Refugees

​Members at Beth El have partnered with Jewish Family and Community Services of the East Bay to help resettle refugees from war-torn regions. Our new Welcome Committees have already kicked into action, volunteering to help with the newcomer families, finding furniture, searching for suitable apartments, raising funds, etc. We welcomed our first family from Afghanistan and they are staying at the home of one of our congregants. This is generous, wonderful and exciting. We are working hard to help them with the logistics of adapting to their new life here. Next, we will be helping with a single woman from Afghanistan and a Syrian family, both due to arrive relatively soon.
 
To learn more about the program visit http://jfcs-eastbay.org/refugee-resettlement/
To join our refugee welcome teams and/or find out how to support our efforts, contact Gadi Meir.
 

High Holy Days Food Drive

Every year during the High Holy Days we think about those in need and collect non-perishable food for the Alameda County Food Bank. Please pick up one of the collection bags at Rosh Hashanah and bring it back chock full of food at Yom Kippur. Ready-to-eat, protein rich foods such as peanut butter, tuna fish, etc., are always needed. Together we can fight hunger in our community.

Turkey Drive

Each year around Thanksgiving, Beth El participates in the Alameda Food Bank Turkey Drive. As a congregation, we raise approximately $4,000 toward support for this worthwhile institution. Please let us know if you would like to help with our annual mailing.

Join the Full Belly Farm CSA (Community Supported Agriculture)

Beth El has partnered with Full Belly Farm to have produce boxes of locally sourced, seasonal fruits and vegetables delivered HERE! If you've been waiting for the right time to join a CSA and support our community's agriculture, the time is now! More information and the registration form are available here. (NOTE: Make sure to mark the Wednesday, Oxford Street pick-up location!)