A community can accomplish more than a single individual. At Temple Israel, we live into our social justice mission by organizing around pressing issues of interest to groups of members.
We are active participants in the Interfaith Council of Franklin County. We do advocacy, education and practical action in areas from energy efficiency to direct support for vulnerable populations.
Active groups are working now in the following areas:
The Refugee Support Project is an interfaith community group based at Temple Israel which is working to help refugees in Syria as well as immigrants locally. Visit our dedicated RSP page to learn more.
Israel Dialogue Project
The Israel Dialogue Project was established to create a sustained civil conversation about Israel. IDP has:
- Created listening sessions to hear from a wide range of voices on the Israel/Palestine conflict;
- Arranged one-time and on-going adult education formats to screen films, hear from speakers and read books, all with the goal of expanding perspectives on this important, and sometimes heated topic.
The Shmitta group works at the temple and in the community to increase social wealth and resilience, reduce our collective environmental footprints, reduce food waste and increase local food resilience. This summer will be our third season gleaning (capturing harvest that would otherwise go to waste) and processing food to take home, use at the temple and donate to food banks and related outlets.
Our rabbi is a trained Compassionate Listening facilitator and has brought that skill to our internal conversations. We offer periodic practice sessions in CL to enhance a culture of healthy communication, for personal and organizational development. We have also brought this skill to bear on issues of wider community interest, in support of civil discourse.
Temple Israel is an active and frequent participant in several community meal programs throughout the year. We cook, serve, eat and celebrate with other churches and organizations who together constitute the dynamic food justice network in Franklin County.