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Tikkun Olam

The Prophet Amos reminds us that part of our mission, as Jews, is to “let justice flow like water, and righteousness like a mighty stream.” At Congregation Beth Israel, these are more than words — they are a call to action.

Throughout the year, we provide a variety of ways for our members to get involved in our work of Tikkun Olam (repairing the world). Below is a list of our current Social Justice initiatives. If you would like more information about joining one of our committees, or taking part in any of these events, please contact:

Debbie Greenbaum, Social Justice Committee Chair

Rabbi Joshua Herman, Social Justice Committee clergy liaison


 

Current Social Justice Initiatives

SEARCH

SEARCH provides services to stabilize, educate, employ and house homeless Houstonians. SEARCH is one of the beneficiaries of our High Holidays Good Works Fund campaign. You may learn more about SEARCH here.

Houston Food Bank

 

We are working with the Houston Food Bank to offer several opportunities for adults or families (with children 8 or older) to give hands-on support to this tremendous organization that provides 137,000 meals a week to social service agencies across 18 counties. Our committee partners with the congregation’s youth to organize an annual High Holiday Food Drive to benefit the Houston Food Bank.

 

Mitzvah Day

Although we know that every day provides opportunities to do a mitzvah (a sacred obligation and good deed) Congregation Beth Israel sets aside one day each year for Temple members to join together en masse to do important work throughout our city. Hundreds of volunteers choose from dozens of meaningful opportunities, and spend the day volunteering with family and friends.

Please join us for Mitzvah Day which occurs each year in April. It is organized by our Mitzvah Day co-chairs — Bob and Sany Hill, Edie and Bill Orlin, and Carol Danek.

 

Summer Internship Program 

For more than 18 years, we have been offering youth at our Temple (over the age of 16) an opportunity to work in non-profit and social service agencies around Houston during the summer. Interns gain valuable work experience while assisting organizations that contribute positively to our community. Compensation is offered for the internship, with a choice of a stipend or volunteer hours.

Our Summer Internship Committee is chaired by Kim Trimble.

 

Christmas Day Volunteers

Each year, Temple members provide relief at several organizations so that our Christian neighbors might take advantage of their holiday. In recent years we have provided meals and activities at the Ronald McDonald House and the VA. Please be in touch in the late fall to find out about this year’s volunteer opportunities.

Braes Food Pantry 

Congregation Beth Israel is an active supporting congregation of the Braes Interfaith Ministries Food Pantry. Each year our congregation makes a financial contribution, and we are happy to connect members of the congregation to volunteer opportunities at this important organization.

 

JCC Meals on Wheels

Beth Israel helps provide drivers for the Meals on Wheels Program through the Jewish Community Center, and volunteers are always needed. A commitment may be as little as four (4) hours a month or as many as two (2) hours or more a week. The infirm and elderly need nutritious meals 365 days a year.

 

Disaster Relief 

In times of local need and disaster, Beth Israel historically steps up to help the community and encourages its members to assist in whatever ways they can. In 2005, our congregation mobilized our members to help with the local Katrina/Rita disaster relief efforts–volunteering at various agencies, working at the Astrodome and the Convention Center evacuation centers, etc. In recent years, our congregation has gathered funds to assist those affected by the Memorial Day Flood of 2015 and the Tax Day Flood of 2016, as well as the recent flooding in Louisiana. When a natural disaster occurs, please contact our committee to find out what you can do to help.


 



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