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Social Action and Social Justice at BJ: Get Involved!

We’re always trying to support our community. Here are some ways you can get involved:

Upcoming Events and Volunteer Opportunities

Our partner family has arrived!

In partnership with HIAS-NY, we recently welcomed the arrival of a refugee family from Guatemala, whom we will be sponsoring fiscally and assisting with resettlement services. Please consider helping the family in one of the following ways.

  • Spanish-speaking volunteers: We are seeking Spanish speakers who are interested in volunteering, which may include accompanying family members to appointments, visiting apartments with the family, and helping translate calls and written materials, among other actions. Varied levels of proficiency are welcome. If you are able to volunteer, please email Kiana Davis.
  • Have a connection to permanent housing or furniture supplier? Our first goal is to help our partner family locate and furnish housing. If you or someone you know is a property owner, landlord, or realtor OR has connections to low-cost furniture, and may be able to assist, please email Kiana Davis.
  • Donations: Part of our responsibility as a host organization is to assist the family financially with housing, clothes, food, and other expenses while we work with them to establish self-sufficiency. Gifts made to BJ’s Fund to Support Immigrants, Refugees, and Asylum Seekers will help not only this family, but will also allow us to support the ongoing work of assisting other families and refugees. Please consider contributing to this mitzvah.

Volunteer with the Judith Bernstein Lunch Program

The Judith Bernstein Lunch Program provides weekly bagged lunches to anyone facing food insecurity in our neighborhood. We need volunteers on an ongoing basis to:

  •  Prepare and package lunches on Wednesdays from 4:30-7:00 PM
  •  Pick up bread donations from Zabars (80th Street and Broadway) at 7:45 PM on Tuesday evenings and drop off at BJ on Wednesday mornings

Learn more about the Judith Bernstein Lunch Program here.

Social Justice Film Series: Summer of Soul

Thursday, August 18  |  7:00-9:00 PM

Our social justice film series continues on Thursday, August 18, with a screening of Summer of Soul. The documentary highlights the Harlem Cultural Festival, which took place in the summer of 1969 and whose footage was largely forgotten—until now.

Get Involved

New York State August Primary Election

New York State is holding a special primary election on Tuesday, August 23. Find out everything you need to know to vote in this election.

 If you will be out of town or unable to make it to a poll site, request your absentee ballot online by August 8, and make sure to mail it in by August 23 or drop it off at a poll site during early voting or on election day.

Get Out the Vote!

At a time when renewed voter attacks and efforts of voter suppression are sharply on the rise, it is our responsibility to make sure that all voters have the tools and the power to make their voices heard at the ballot. We are proud to join with a coalition of Upper West Side faith communities to support the Reclaim Our Vote (ROV) Campaign in fighting voter suppression through phone banking and postcarding.

Over the spring and summer, we sent more than 4,000 postcards to voters in states with high levels of voter suppression to remind them of their primary elections!

Stay tuned for upcoming opportunities to write postcards and join phone banks to voters this fall.

Jewish Coalition on Criminal Justice Reform

As part of our work with the Jewish Coalition on Criminal Justice Reform, we are preparing for upcoming opportunities for volunteers to visit Rikers Island and to support voter registration drives or attend services alongside Jewish incarcerated individuals.

Environmental Advocacy

Thank you to our Environmental Pledge participants! Over 200 members of our community signed on to our BJ Environmental Pledge earlier this year and committed to incorporating sustainability practices into their daily lives.

Didn’t have a chance to participate? It’s never too late to take action and adopt any of the suggested actions!

Special shout outs to our pledge prize winners: Shira Nadich Levin, Judith Atkinson, Linda Wax Fisher, and Barbara Manocherian.

Give us your fruit and vegetable scraps! Compost drop off is available at BJ every Monday to Thursday from 7:00 AM-7:00 PM.

Coffee & Conversation

Schedule a time this fall to have coffee (in person or virtually) with Kiana Davis, our social action and social justice manager, to discuss ways you can get involved with social action and social justice at BJ.

SASJ Action Alerts

Want to stay in the know about other social action and social justice opportunities from BJ’s partner organizations? Action Alerts are an informal way for us to share upcoming events and advocacy opportunities (usually monthly) related to our social justice issues.

Join or renew today!

BJ’s 2022-2023 membership season is underway. Our spiritual and social justice work together has never been more vital, and if you’ve been joining us on Shabbat and consider us your spiritual home, we hope you consider becoming a member, no matter where you live.