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Beth El has been voted in J Magazine as the "Best Venue for Social Action in the Bay Area Jewish Community." To continue these good works, we need your help! There are many ways for you to become more connected to the Beth El community and to do a mitzvah at the same time! Is there something here that interests you? Can you help us to continue and develop our social action programs? 

Check out any of the following groups or learning or volunteer experiences Beth El has to offer and enrich your connection to the community!

ADULT EDUCATION - Throughout the year, Congregation Beth El holds a variety of opportunities for our adults to gather in community, learn, and experience Judaism together! We are always seeking thought partners on programs or topics to bring into the community as well as leadership and support across the spectrum of Adult Education Programs. To get involved, contact Ethan Andelman.

B’NEI MITZVAH (YOUTH) - Each 7th-grade class is welcomed into Makom Mishpacha (7th Grade Family) at the beginning of the year. Makom Mishpacha seeks to build community and support for Beth El's 7th-grade students and families as they are going through their foundational B'nei Mitzvah year. Makom Mishpacha is led by amazing parent volunteers and is responsible for regular community gatherings and organizing the weekly B'nei Mitzvah support system for each rising B'nei Mitzvah student. To find out more, Contact Rabbi Ira.

COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT COMMITTEE - This committee is passionate about developing a culture at Beth El where every individual feels a strong sense of belonging. This committee works in close connection with Beth El’s Community Engagement Office. To become more involved in fostering community please contact Beth El’s VP of Community Engagement.

CHEVRA KADISHA - Volunteer members of Beth El’s Chevra Kadisha can participate in a continuum of Jewish end-of-life practices including visiting the sick (bikur cholim), performing the sacred Jewish rituals of preparing the body before burial (taharah) and guarding the body between death and burial (shomrim), arranging prayer services in the home following a death (shiva minyanim), providing emotional support to those who are grieving, organizing community educational events about death and dying, and offering other forms of community support to the dying and the bereaved. Volunteer members of our Chevra Kadisha may choose how they wish to participate in this sacred work.

GIFT SHOP - Volunteer to assist shoppers with purchases from Beth El’s lay-led gift shop. For more information on volunteer opportunities, please contact Robinn Magid.

GARDEN - This group is open to anyone interested in honing their green thumb. Join Jeannine Cohen, as she guides us in how to tend to Beth El’s vegetable garden.

HOMELESS MEAL - Congregation Beth El has provided meals to those in need in the Berkeley community for the past 35 years.  The meals are currently distributed on a take-away basis on the 3rd Sunday of the month in Downtown Berkeley and to the Tiny House Village near the Oakland Coliseum.  In addition, working with the Beth El Mitzvah Corps, meals are provided on the same day to Beth El congregants in need (e.g., illness, bereavement).  

20-25 volunteers are needed for each monthly meal.  To receive the monthly email volunteer sign-up link or for other information, please contact Jeff Leon.

LIBRARY - The Library Committee supports the adults’ and children’s libraries. Committee members meet on weekday afternoons to shelve books and review new additions. For more information, contact Scott Spear.

MITZVAH CORPS - This group provides a simple way for congregants to help each other in times of acute or temporary need. On a private website, Mitzvah Coordinators post requests for meals, rides, and even visits to help a congregant or family navigate a transition. Sign up on the Mitzvah Corps website! For more information, contact Laura Mytels.

B-REDI (BELONGING - RACIAL, EQUITY, DIVERSITY & INCLUSION) - The B-REDI Team was created to hold a space for thinking in a more focused way about how the pervasive racism and white supremacy of our dominant culture shows up inside of our Beth El community. To join, please contact Alicia Klein and Jane Stern.

RITUAL COMMITTEE - Ritual is one of the key pillars of Jewish life. Through working with clergy, the Ritual Committee helps in planning Beth El’s Shabbat and Jewish Holidays including programming, food and ritual observances. For more information, contact Yonatan Frisch.

TIKKUN OLAM LEADERSHIP TEAM - Beth El expresses our community commitment to tikkun olam (repairing the world) by choosing an opportunity and working together. TOLT, our Tikkun Olam Leadership Team, organizes the process.  Helping create the Tiny House Village was our previous effort. Now we’re advocating for the Care First, Jails Last campaign, urging Alameda County Supervisors to invest in community-based mental health services and work to find alternatives to jailing people with mental illness. Please complete this form if you are interested in joining TOLT or signing up to volunteer or join our rapid responder list.

INTERFAITH ACTIVITIES - At Beth El we work 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.

YOUTH & FAMILY EDUCATION - Throughout the year, Beth El's YAFE Programs seek partners to help with planning class-related special programs and opportunities for parents and caregivers to be in community with one another. In addition, our YAFE Program Leaders seek partners to collaborate on special projects, be a sounding board, and provide leadership and support across the spectrum of YAFE Programs. Contact Rabbi Ira for more information.

OTHER VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES - There are always opportunities to help CBE thrive. Do you have an expertise or interest in a particular area that could be beneficial to supporting the community? A few possible volunteer opportunities include the following:

  • "House" Work: Can you help around the campus (e.g., electrical, carpentry, painting, gardening, sound)?
  • High Holy Days Needs: Could you help plan a holiday program, usher, coordinate rides for congregants needing transportation or help with the Yom Kippur break fast?
  • Gala Committee: Do you have a passion for throwing a fantastic party? Help coordinate Beth El’s annual Gala to raise money for Youth & Family Education programs.
  • Marketing & Events: Do you have public relations or marketing experience? Help us get the word out about programming and events!
  • Office Volunteer: Could you answer the phones and greet people at the front door or perhaps assist with some light filling of paperwork?

If you're interested in any of these opportunities, want more information, or want to do something that isn't listed here, please email the Community Engagement Office at


Thu, June 13 2024 7 Sivan 5784