"It's never too late, too early, or too often to give back and make the world a better place."
- Helen Diller z"l
Congregation Emanu-El is involved with many projects related to hunger, the environment, literacy, and poverty. Emanu-El received the Irving J. Fain Award for overall social action, 2007. Irving J. Fain was a passionate proponent of social justice and served for a decade as Chair of the Commission on Social Action of Reform Judaism. The Fain Awards, established in 1983 in his honor and memory, are awarded every two years to congregations whose work in the area of social justice is exemplary.
Our congregation’s greening program earned a “Conservation Champion Award" (Union of Reform Judaism) and a Green Oscar from Interfaith Power and Light for energy efficiency improvements.
We invite you to explore ways you can enrich your life and deepen your connection to Judaism and the Emanu-El community through the mitzvah of helping others.
Social Justice Request Form
Volunteer Shoppers Needed at San Francisco Food Bank - ongoing
One Warm Coat - January 11 - March 11
Pledge to Vote Today with the World Zionist Organization - January 15 - April 30
JCRC Seeks Pro-Bono Attorneys and Translators - ongoing
Get Involved with Star Community Home - ongoing
Volunteer to Cook Sunday Dinners at G-House - ongoing
Tutoring with Back on Track - ongoing
Hebrew Free Loan - ongoing
Volunteer Shoppers Needed at San Francisco Food Bank
Each Friday morning Emanu-El congregants select and purchase food at the San Francisco Food Bank to be distributed on Mondays at the ONLY Healthy Children Pantry in the Richmond District at Roosevelt Middle School. Emanu-El’s pantry would not exist without this committed group of volunteers. Because shoppers never fill a shift by themselves, we are seeking to enlarge our volunteer pool and need your help!
- Shop 1 time every 4-6 weeks on Friday morning between 8:00-9:00 am
- Volunteer for a minimum of 6 months
- Stay within the weekly budget
- Only purchase healthy foods that you would eat yourself
To find out more contact Lead shopper, Donna Neumark at firstname.lastname@example.org.
One Warm Coat - Donate a Coat this Winter
January 11 - March 11, 2015, Temple Emanu-El Foyer
It looks like there's a cold winter ahead! The Farmers' Almanac forecast for this winter predicts below-normal temperatures for three-quarters of the country. That means that too many children and adults will be facing Fall and Winter without a warm coat. Of course, you can help change that. Youth and Family Education is organizing our own One Warm Coat drive for the second year in a row and St Anthony's will be our designated recipient.
World Zionist Organization Elections
Right now, Israel and the Jewish people are at a crucial moment in history. Our political and spiritual leaders in Israel need our help to determine the future of the Jewish State and the soul of the Jewish people. Stand for a better Israel by casting your vote!
Voting in the WZO elections is now OPEN, and you can make your voice heard by voting right now! We need all the ARZA votes we can get. Want to know more?
JCRC Seeks Pro-Bono Attorneys and Translators
We have seen harrowing news about thousands of unaccompanied minors fleeing gang violence in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. Children of all ages, including toddlers, who endure horrific experiences on their journey to the United States. They come in hopes of finding their families and searching for a life without fear and violence. Once in the United States they need legal assistance as they go through the scary and confusing process of trying to get refugee status in order to stay in the United States.
As Jews, our own legacy as immigrants, frequently as refugees, coupled with our values of tikkun olam and welcoming the stranger propel us to take action. Hundreds of kids right here in the Bay Area need our help as they await deportation hearings in court.
Our partners at Legal Services for Children need pro bono attorneys and translators. Please email email@example.com for more details.
Provide Respite Care at the Star Community Home in the Richmond District!
Tuesdays 7:00-8:00 pm
The Star Community Home is an 18-month project to address the critical community need of providing housing and services to homeless single mothers with children at the former convent at Star of the Sea Parish in San Francisco. Spend quality time with the Children of Star Community Home while allowing mothers some time for themselves. If you are experienced and willing to work with infants, toddlers and young children, then this is the volunteer opportunity you’ve been waiting for! Contact Diana Contreras at (415) 379-8690.
Tutor with Back on Track
Monday – Thursday 3:30 – 5:30 pm OR Tuesday – Thursday 6:00 – 8:00 pmThird Baptist Church, 1399 McAllister Street
The year 2014 marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of Back on Track, a partnership that originated when Rabbi Robert Kirschner of Congregation Emanu-El and Rev. Amos C. Brown of Third Baptist Church, met during a 1987 civil rights march in Alabama against racial violence and the Klu Klux Klan. Inspired by the march, they agreed to form a unique partnership and build bridges of opportunity and academic enrichment for students in San Francisco. Brown and Kirschner recognized that a disproportionate number of African American students were performing below grade level in San Francisco's public schools. The partnership they created was the genesis of the first pulpit exchange and of Back On Track, a tutoring program that promotes both academic achievement on a one‐on‐one basis for students who are otherwise not well served and a mentoring relationship.
The unique partnership has crossed religious and cultural differences to build bridges of opportunity for K-12 students. As a non-denominational community based program, Back on Track has served over 3,000 young people from diverse multicultural populations throughout San Francisco.
Email Regina Herbert, Membership Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (415) 346-9316.
Volunteer to Cook Sunday Dinners at G-House
Sundays, 5:00 – 7:00 pm
This Larkin Street Youth Services site in the Richmond District, helps former foster youth and homeless youth between the ages of 18 and 24 to make successful transitions into adulthood and into living independently. Each Sunday, congregants from Emanu-El plan, cook, serve, and eat dinner for and with the G-House residents.
Contact Sandy Rechtschaffen to sign up.
Hebrew Free Loan
Need a little help? Hebrew Free Loan provides interest-free loans to Jewish residents in Northern California needing assistance or pursuing life-long dreams. Loan categories include: student, adoption, business, first-time home buyer, unemployment, emergency, debt consolidation, and more. Since 1897, Hebrew Free Loan has provided vital assistance to more than 100,000 people. By offering loans rather than charity, Hebrew Free Loan helps people become, and remain, self-sufficient.