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Tikkun Olam Programs

Resources: "In Search of Shelter and Financial Security"

On February 8, 2019, the Tikkun Olam committee hosted a social justice-themed Shabbat dinner, "In Search of Shelter and Financial Security." Our member panelists Joanna Ain, Bekka Lane, and Marc Dohan have suggested numerous resources and volunteer opportunities. We hope you will continue to explore these topics!
 

Temple Shir Tikvah’s Ongoing Tikkun Olam Projects
 

For  more information about all projects, contact tikkunolam@shir-tikvah.org.

  • The Dwelling Place Soup Kitchen - Volunteer at a soup kitchen located at the United Methodist Church in Woburn. Volunteers from Shir Tikvah serve meals the first Wednesday of every month at 5:15pm. Children with parents are welcome. This is part of TST’s Learning Corps program.

  • Family Table - Donate boxes of raisins and whole-grain crackers each week to Family Table, the largest kosher food pantry in New England. Family Table provides healthy food on a monthly and emergency basis to people in need and serves more than 100 towns and 400 families each month. Volunteer needs: donations and drivers.

  • Food Link, Arlington - a food rescue nonprofit that contracts with local groceries and restaurants to rescue nutritious food and deliver it to social service agencies, afterschool programs, low-income housing, and senior centers. Volunteers are needed several Sundays each year for an afternoon of service at Food Link’s Arlington facility. Volunteers sort food, remove food from packages for composting, and sweep and clean the facility. Our next day of service: March 3, 1:30 to 3:30pm. Children ages 11 or older are welcome with an adult.

  • Greater Boston Jewish Coalition for Literacy (GBJCL) - Become a literacy tutor in an under-resourced K-8 school in East Somerville. Literacy tutors must be commitment starting in mid-October. Tutors are partnered with individual students for two consecutive one-to-one, forty-minute sessions. Volunteers are also needed for before school homework help. GBJCL requires that volunteer tutors complete a one-time, 2 to 3 hour training. Beyond that, all you need is an appreciation for children’s learning and a joy of reading.

  • Habitat for Humanity, Lawrence - Join a building work crew once a month, from 8:30am-3:30pm. No particular skills are required to participate, but you must be 16 or older to be on the worksite. We usually eat out for lunch, but lots of folks bring lunch and eat on site.  Upcoming builds: 3/30/19, 4/27/19, 5/18/19. Location may change each month: contact the Tikkun Olam Committee to confirm address.

  • Red Cross Blood Drives - The temple hosts 1 or 2 Red Cross blood drives each year. Volunteers are needed to coordinate and promote the drive within the temple, staff the registration tables, and hand out snacks and drinks to blood donors. We are seeking a volunteer to coordinate our next drive.

  • Sewing to Change Lives/Days for Girls - Days for Girls aims to create a more dignified free and educated world through access to lasting feminine hygiene solutions. Volunteers cut fabric and sew kits of sanitary supplies to donate to girls in need around the world.  Patterns and instructions provided.

  • Somerville Homeless Coalition - SHC is an adult shelter in Somerville. Volunteers are needed the second Sunday of every month, from 4:30 to 5:30pm. You can prepare part of a meal at your home, or deliver meals prepared by other TST members to the shelter. There is no regular commitment required. You will receive an email monthly and can sign up at your convenience. Drop-off location is the Ambrose School, 27 High Street, Winchester, at 4:30pm.

  • Project Ezra - Each year on Christmas Eve, Temple Shir Tikvah partners with Temple Isaiah of Lexington to prepare and deliver meals to elderly residents and families in Arlington, Bedford, and Lexington. Jobs include meal preparation, decorating delivery bags, packing food, making deliveries, and more.

Shir Tzedek Social Justice

Mission: to identify social justice issues that are important to the congregation and organize the congregation to act on these issues in the public arena, independently and as part of larger coalitions.

To get involved with any of these projects, please contact the Shir Tzedek committee.

Current Projects:

  • Since 2005, we've been active members of the Greater Boston Interfaith Organization (GBIO), a coalition of religious congregations and other groups working towards progressive public policy on issues such as housing, health care cost reform, and criminal justice reform.

  • Fight Intolerance Promote Unity (FIPU) is an initiative we launched in January of 2017 in response to our congregants’ desire for a way to get involved and respond to the current climate of intolerance and exclusion. There are five action groups:

    • Bystander Training - temple members train community groups to respond to hate incidents.

    • Welcoming the Stranger - immigrant and refugee support activities.

    • Intercultural Working Group – plans activities with our Muslim neighbors.

    • Racial Justice – educates our congregation about the history of racial injustice in our country and about local events related to this theme.

    • Save our Democracy - focuses on issues related to electoral corruption and injustice.

  • We are members of the Jewish Climate Action Network (JCAN). Their mission is to mobilize communities to take leadership in bold climate campaigns through education and reducing carbon footprint.

Upcoming Tikkun Olam & Shir Tzedek Special Events

  • Tuesday, May 21, 1:00 pm: Jericho Walk, ICE Enforcement and Removal Office, 1000 District Ave, Burlington (also comes up as 10 District Ave on maps). This is a peaceful, interfaith witnessing activity that expresses support for the rights of immigrants and the importance of keeping families together. It begins and ends with a short prayer/song. Bring signs with positive messages (nothing about specific politicians, please). Please park near the back of the lot, as far as possible from District Ave, to leave parking spaces for those coming to their ICE appointments and for other building tenants.

  • Sunday to Tuesday, May 19-21: Consultation on Conscience, Washington D.C. TST will send a delegation to this biannual gathering of Reform social justice leaders from synagogues across the country. Learn more.

Notes from the Community

  • Read a thank you note from Habitat for Humanity commemorating Shir Tikvah's contribution

  • Read a  letter of solidarity from St. Eulalia Parish in Winchester, signed by hundreds in their community, following the October 27 attack at Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh.

Wed, May 22 2019 17 Iyar 5779