Social Action

The mission of the Social Action committee at Bet Shalom is to educate congregants about social justice issues related to Jewish values, and to promote congregation-wide engagement in the work of tikkun olam, the healing of our world.

Listed below are our five pillars of Social Action.

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Homelessness

Tour of Beacon Residency, 66 West
Many of you have asked about being able to see first-hand the amazing work that Beacon does in our community through the construction and oversight of so many affordable housing residencies across the metro.  Thank you to Pam Kaufman for helping to organize these two opportunities to tour the 66 West Residency.
-Wednesday, March 11, 2:00 pm
-Wednesday, April 15, 6:00 pm
Please RSVP to Pam Kaufman at pammywk@gmail.com
Advocacy Day on the Hill with Beacon

We will be heading to the Capitol on Thursday, March 26 for a special Bet Shalom day on the hill to meet with our representatives to discuss the work that Beacon is doing.

Please contact Gayle Kaplan at gazelle928@gmail.com

Bet Shalom is a proud partner congregation of Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative, helping families who are experiencing homelessness secure affordable housing.

For weekly updates from Beacon CLICK HERE.

Bet Shalom as a collaborative congregation with Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative is supporting Beacons effort to build an affordable housing complex in Hopkins. Please read Vista 44 Materials  and come to either or both the Hopkin’s City Planners meeting and the Hopkin’s City Counsel meeting.

Racial and Social Disparities

CLICK HERE to learn about JCA Decriminalizing Communities Campaign.

To learn more about this organization, and how you can become involved CLICK HERE.

The Social Action Committee would like to distribute information urging the Israeli government’s support of the migration and care for Ethiopia’s remaining Jewry.

Harlan Jacobs ( founder and president of Genesis Business Centers, Ltd.) spoke a Social Action Committee meeting about the humanitarian crisis facing 8000 Ethiopian Jews who are left in Adis Ababa.

Harlan’s request is to have people write letters and send them by “snail mail” to Israel’s Counsul General in Chicago to help advocate for Israel to support accepting these Ethiopian Jews in Israel.

CLICK HERE for a draft letter to The Honorable Aviv Ezra.

To read more about this issue CLICK HERE.

Domestic Gun Violence

Working together to prevent gun violence. CLICK HERE to learn more.

Demand smarter gun laws now. CLICK HERE to learn more.

Hunger and Food Insecurity

ICA Food Shelf serves our people in Hopkins, Minnetonka, Excelsior, Shorewood, Deephaven, Greenwood, and Woodland, Minnesota. Bet Shalom is a proud partner congregation of ICA.

To read more about this organization, CLICK HERE. Bet Shalom actively volunteers with Loaves and Fishes, serving meals at shelters. Check back here for opportunities to help.

Feed-Me Farms is a local, organic farm, home-based at Bet Shalom Synagogue, starting its first season in the Spring of 2020. Made up of multiple small farm plots in Minnetonka and Hopkins, growing on yards and lots of neighbors and friends. The mission of Feed-Me Farms is to decrease chemical pesticide and fertilizer usage on grass lawns by converting them to organic, food-producing lots. Owned and operated by Jake Jarecki, a member of Bet Shalom and alumni of the religious school and confirmation class of 2007.

As a partnership with Bet Shalom, Feed-Me Farms will be donating fresh produce every week to the ICA Food Shelf. Feed-Me Farms will be providing monthly community programming hours to the congregation in the form of preschool and religious school garden field trips, gardening and cooking classes for the public, and more. Feed-Me Farms will be selling produce at local farmer’s markets as well as a special, weekly pop-up Sunday Market at Bet Shalom. Other offerings will include limited tickets to a monthly Farm-To-Plate dinner hosted at Bet Shalom, as well as Wednesday night meals for the Hebrew School in the months of September and October.

Feed-Me Farms is offering pre-season gift cards for sale, with a 5% bonus. Gift cards are redeemable for fresh produce at markets or dinner tickets all growing season and never expire. A great gift for anyone who plans to eat vegetables next year! For more info on gift cards or general inquiries email Jake.

Climate Change and Environmental Abuse

A religious response to climate change. CLICK HERE to learn more.

To read more about this organization, CLICK HERE.

B'nai Mitzvah Mini Grant

It is required that our b’nai mitzvah student complete a mitzvah project. If you are looking for ideas, CLICK HERE to see ideas and contacts for organizations.

If you have an original idea, or are looking for extra funding, the Social Action Committee has a small grant program that can help out. For more information and the application, CLICK HERE. Submit your application to Rabbi Crimmings.

If you are interested in joining the Social Action Committee, or have any questions, please email socialactionchair@betshalom.org