For Passover, the JCPA along with MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger, is once again offering a phenomenal mobilizing event through which JRF communities, congregations from every Jewish stream and local JCRCs can engage community members in meaningful anti-poverty advocacy: The Hunger Seder. read more »
The annual Fighting Poverty with Faith mobilization focuses on addressing root causes of poverty and ensuring that all who live in the United States have access to opportunities to prosper. We as reconstructionist Jews join the moral authority and organizing power of the faith community to make it a national priority to meet the needs of those living in poverty. This mobilization utilizes the strength of the coordinated faith community to move individuals and communities to action and advocate for clear, immediate policy solutions to address the causes and consequences of poverty.
For millions of Americans, safe and decent housing is unaffordable and unavailable. The faith community cannot stand idly by as too many of our neighbors are forced to make impossible choices among necessities such as food, rent, and medicine. We recognize the importance of decent shelter as a core necessity to overcoming poverty and will educate our communities about this issue and work to increase the supply of and expand access to housing for low income families and individuals. The Fighting Poverty with Faith 2012 mobilization, “Building Opportunity through Affordable Housing for all,” will focus on protecting and strengthening access to safe, decent, and affordable housing during the week of action from November 8 – 18, 2012.
Please use this website to learn about the mobilization and find programming and advocacy resources for your community. We hope you will join us in our fight against poverty. Please see the 2012 letter attached below on this page and consider signing it and participating. (see http://fightingpovertywithfaith.com/). read more »
AJWS Invites U.S. Jewish Communities to Observe Global Hunger Shabbat, Nov. 2-3, 2012
JRF Hunger and Poverty Resources: http://jrf.org/hunger
AJWS invites you to join us in observing Global Hunger Shabbat—a day of solidarity, education, reflection and activism to raise awareness about global hunger.
Global Hunger Shabbat will be an opportunity for Jews nationwide to unite for this common cause and to raise our collective voices against the injustice that is claiming lives around the world. As Jews, social justice has always been in our prayers and our actions, and this day of solidarity is designed to bring about our deepest impulse for effecting change. This year, Global Hunger Shabbat will take place in the weeks prior to Thanksgiving, linking our work in pursuit of global food justice to this season of gratitude.
To make it simple to organize Global Hunger Shabbat in your own community, AJWS will provide an array of educational tools to suit various groups and audiences. Use them to organize Shabbat dinner, a day of study or a Shabbat-long program in your home, school, campus or synagogue – simply sign up here! You can view the materials from last year’s Global Hunger Shabbat.
To help individuals, congregations and communities organize and host their own Global Hunger Shabbat events on March 19th, AJWS has created an online toolkit (available at www.ajws.org/hungershabbat), which includes:
AJWS and its grantess in Africa, Asia and the Americas believe that a local approach to realizing the human right to food will most effectively halt food insecurity worldwide. AJWS implements this approach by supporting grassroots change by and for local people in myriad ways—teaching farmers to grow food using sustainable farming methods; endowing communities with seed banks and harvest storage facilities; founding agricultural cooperatives and jumpstarting profitable local markets; and empowering indigenous communities to advocate for their land and water rights. Global Hunger Shabbat offers the American Jewish community an opportunity to join AJWS and its grassroots partners in supporting these critical solutions.
Global Hunger Shabbat toolkits and more information about the program are available at www.ajws.org/hungershabbat. These materials are part of an ongoing collection of educational resources that AJWS has created on global justice topics.
(See JTA article http://jta.org/news/article/2008/12/03/1001338/thre)
ONE is Americans of all beliefs and every walk of life - united as ONE - to help make poverty history. We are a campaign of over 2.4 million people and growing from all 50 states and over 100 of America's most well-known and respected non-profit, advocacy and humanitarian organizations. As ONE, we are raising public awareness about the issues of global poverty, hunger, disease and efforts to fight such problems in the world's poorest countries. As ONE, we are asking our leaders to do more to fight the emergency of global AIDS and extreme poverty. ONE believes that allocating more of the U.S. budget toward providing basic needs like health, education, clean water and food would transform the futures and hopes of an entire generation in the world's poorest countries.
JRF’s resources (including the JRF Omer Initiative on Hunger and Poverty, and One Sabbath Torah Guide contributions from Larry Bush, Jeffery Dekor, Rabbi Lewis Eron, Abby Weinberg Rabbi Ezra Weinberg, Carol Towarnicky) are now part of the toolkit available through ONE to organize a ONE Sabbath event at your house of worship.
Also watch the new international multi-faith video ONE has produced with religious leaders speaking on this issue, including the Reconstructionist movement:
http://www.one.org/documents/faith/multifaith/index.html read more »
For your information, here are the resolutions that came out of the recent JCPA plenum. In the two years since JRF became a member religious organization and fourth Jewish movement in the JCPA, we have participated in many coalitions and sign-on initiatives. This Plenum marked the first time we were a national religious organization co-sponsoring three of the resolutions below. Thanks to Carl Sheingold (JRF Executive Vice-President), Bob Barkin (JRF President) and Val Kaplan (JRF Chair of External Affiliations) for representing us and voting on our behalf at the Plenum.
Full listing of partner organizations and sign-ons,
JCPA speaks to you each week, alerting you to what the community relations field is doing to safeguard the rights of Jews here, in Israel, and around the world and to protect, preserve and promote a just, democratic and pluralistic American society. For three generations, we have brought together diverse voices in the Jewish community to unite a strong Jewish public policy force.
Date: March 11, 2009
From: Max Mulcahy, Program Director, JCPA
Below are the final versions of the JCPA resolutions as adopted by the 2009 Plenum. Click on the links to access the resolution text in pdf format. Please share these resolutions with your board and leadership. If you have any questions please feel free to contact JCPA offices.
The Tikkun Olam committee of Congregation Bet Haverim in Atlanta, Georgia, asks the question "How little could you live on?" At the Kabbalat Shabbat service on Friday, December 5 will be a special program on the Living Wage Campaign. This interfaith alliance, of which Bet Haverim is a member, hopes to raise the salaries of the lowest-paid workers in Georgia, many of whom are not covered by the federal minimum wage law. To help understand the significance of the choices workers must make, congregants have been invited to jot down ahead of time their own “subsistence” budget for a month, including just the necessities they must pay for and to bring it to the December 5 service. How little could YOU live on? Read more!
People of diverse faiths in almost 100 communities in 36 states are challenging candidates and elected officials to address the issue of poverty in America during "Week of Action” September 9 – 16, 2008. This call to action is to bring attention to the needs of the nation’s poor and urge candidates for elected office to outline what they would do in their first 100 days in office to develop comprehensive plans for reducing poverty and creating economic opportunity in the United States. read more »
Visit www.jrf.org/fight-poverty-with-faith for full details of this initiative.
JRF calls on the members of its affiliated communities to join together in dialogue and action in response to human rights and social justice infringements at Agriprocessors, Inc, the nation’s largest kosher slaughterhouse.
To these ends, the JRF Update on Agriprocessors: Background and Action Steps, attached to this story, was compiled to assist you in your local communal and personal decision making.
Alternative Kosher Cooperatives
Here are three alternative kosher distributors, all using the csa
As an extension of our Tuv Ha'aretz CSA program, RSNS has just partnered with Mitzvah Meat, so our members can order grass-fed, free- range kosher meat from a local NY farm, delivered to our synagogue in time for Rosh Hashanah!
If you're not in the DC or NY area, you may be out of luck for now, but if you go to the Kol Foods site, there might be some information about how to start your own supply chain, based on this model!
Cantor Eric Schulmiller
The Reconstructionist Synagogue of the North Shore Plandome, NY
We talked about the ways the Rwandan experience is both similar and markedly different than the Jewish one. Obviously the wounds here are very fresh; and unlike the Jews of Europe, the goverment is committed to bringing all aspects of Rwandan society back together in one extremely small country.
Whether this will succeed over the long term or not is an open question. One woman who joined our conversation expressed her doubts - saying that while the political reconciliation is important, much of the underlying pain and hatred continues to simmer under the surface. How many generations does it take for this kind of pain to dissipate in a community? The Jewish people hav been learning this for some time - Rwanda is struggling with the tragic question as well.
Our final visit was a heartbreaking tour of Kigali’s Public Hospital. More on this in my next post…
The following article from the Toronto Star features Rabbi Shawn Zevit.
Defining Poverty: What does it mean to be poor in Ontario today? As the province grapples with that question, the Star asked dozens of local experts. Here are their answers ...