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CONGREGATION B'NAI TORAH
Social Action

Amy Robinson
Social Action Chair


B’nai Torah is proud to help its members make a difference in the larger world. We partner with a diverse set of community partners to help those in need.

Want to get involved? Click here to let us know!


BACKPACK BUDDIES 
During a typical school year, Congregation B'nai Torah Backpack Buddies provides nutritious meals for 80 children at 2 elementary schools who might otherwise go hungry every weekend. Thank you to our wonderful volunteers who make this possible each week! Due to COVID-19 and many schools teaching virtually, we have been supporting local food pantries with financial and food donations. Please consider donating to this wonderful cause so we can feed even more people in need. Click here to make a donation.  Thank you to all of our generous donors for sponsoring this important organization! Volunteer Information: If you are interested in volunteering, please email btbackpackbuddies@gmail.com

The food pantries are so grateful for what we bring, but the need is so great that we would like to do more. There are several ways that you can participate. All donations go towards purchasing food. You can donate online and select "Backpack Buddies" in the "type" section or send a check to B’nai Torah with Backpack Buddies in the notes line. We have been so fortunate to be able to provide food for so many children. We could not do this without the generosity of the B’nai Torah community. Thank you all for what you have done and what you will continue to do for this important endeavor. 

B'NAI MITZVAH PROJECTS
As students prepare for becoming B’nai Mitzvah, they reflect on the responsibilities towards themselves, God and others. These students recognize that becoming a responsible Jewish adult means taking responsibility for the world around them, and are dedicated to committing their hands, heads and hearts to making the world better than how they inherited it. For more information, contact Rabbi K at rabbik@bnaitorah.org.

FAMILY PROMISE
Because of the efforts of Congregation B'nai Torah, Family Promise of North Fulton/DeKalb
(FPNFD) has been able to help homeless children and their families right here in Fulton and DeKalb County. FPNFD is one of 202 programs nationally affiliated with Family Promise. Since its formation in 1988, collectively Family Promise Affiliates have served more than 700,000 men, women and children, involving 6,000 congregations and more than 180,000 volunteers. Family Promise works with homeless families to tailor individualized plans to help them take the necessary steps toward lasting independence. Families rotate on a weekly basis between congregations, with congregations hosting for one week a quarter, up to four times per year. Congregation B'nai Torah partners with Mt. Vernon Presbyterian Church to support Family Promise. Each quarter, you can volunteer to serve dinner, or donate to the Rabbi's Discretionary Fund (note Family Promise). Please contact our coordinators, Amy Graiser, Mary Simon or Michael Simon, at familypromiseatlanta@gmail.com with any questions. To learn more, please visit Family Promise online.

HUNGER WALK
The Hunger Walk Run, an annual 5K walk and "fun run," is an Atlanta Community Food Bank event that unites our community to raise awareness and critical funds for local hunger relief. Proceeds from the event benefit the Atlanta Community Food Bank and other local nonprofit organizations that support food pantries, community kitchens, shelters and other programs for people in need of food assistance. These benefiting partner organizations help recruit participants and receive a percentage of the funds raised to support their direct hunger relief programs. The family-friendly event includes food trucks, games, education activities, live entertainment and more! For more information, contact Rabbi K at rabbik@bnaitorah.org.

LAKE FOREST ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
Lake Forest Elementary School is a Title 1 School in our community, that relies on community organizations to provide supplies and clothing to the students that live below the poverty line. Congregation B'nai Torah donates school supplies, backpacks and clothing to the students twice a year: the Hanukkah Festival and Mitzvah Festival. Please contact  
Deborah Lewis to participate. To learn more, please visit Lake Forest Elementary School online.

MAOT CHITTIN
Maot Chittim, "wheat money," is an ancient tradition in which Jewish people donate money to Jewish people in need in order for them to purchase food for Passover. Each Passover, we encourage everyone to participate through JF&CS. This group of volunteers coordinates the distribution of food and funds to Jewish families.

MATANOT LE'EVYONIM
One of the mitzvot of Purim is Matanot Le'evyonim, donations to the poor. How can we celebrate when others are hungry? At all of our Purim events, we encourage people to bring cash or a check for Matanot L'evyonim.

MITZVAH DAY
Each year on MLK Jr. Day, we either host or are partners for Mitzvah Day. We encourage families to spend their day off as a day ON, and make a positive impact in the community. Community members bring their families for an energizing experiential service-learning opportunity and connect with the needs in your community. For more information, contact Ashley Cohen at acohen@bnaitorah.org.

NEW AMERICAN PATHWAYS
New American Pathways provides approximately 4,000 refugees per year with the necessary tools to rebuild their lives and achieve long-term success. Our specially designed programs provide proven pathways for refugees and other immigrants to realize their full potential and dreams while becoming productive, contributing members of Georgia’s communities. Congregation B'nai Torah assists New American Pathways during the High Holidays by collecting lightly used apartment furnishings. These furnishings allow refugees to arrive in Atlanta with the basic needs in their home. If you would like to donate to New American Pathways, please contact
Barry Koffler. To learn more, visit New American Pathways.


OPERATION ISAIAH
Inspired by scripture from the prophet Isaiah, “to share your food with the hungry," Atlanta’s Jewish Community holds their metro-wide food drive each year during the High Holy Days. The Atlanta Jewish Community Operation Isaiah contribution provides enough food to the Atlanta Community Food Bank for two full months! Congregation B'nai Torah provides a list of food in need to our congregants and requests that the non-perishable items are brought to the synagogue by the end of the High Holidays. To learn more, visit the
Atlanta Food Bank.

SECOND HELPINGS ATLANTA
Second Helpings Atlanta is a nonprofit food rescue organization whose mission is to reduce hunger and food waste in the Metro Atlanta area by rescuing healthy, nutritious, surplus food and distributing it to those in need. With a community of over 450 volunteers, SHA serves as the link between their network of Food Donors and Partner Agencies who feed the hungry on a daily basis. The food they rescue every day gets diverted from landfills and is used to feed those in need, making Atlanta a more environmentally responsible metropolitan area. Congregation B'nai Torah often donates leftover food from events and Kiddush lunches to Second Helpings Atlanta.

SOJOURN
Sojourn is the Southern Jewish Resource Network for Gender and Sexual Diversity. Each year, Congregation B'nai Torah marches in support of our family, friends, coworkers, and community members. The Jewish Community Contingent is diverse and inclusive, including those who identify as part of the gender and sexual diversity community and those who identify as allies. Everyone is welcome to join us!

ZABAN PARADIES CENTER​ 
The Zaban Paradies Center was founded in 1984 as the first and only shelter for homeless couples
in Atlanta. The mission of the Center was to keep couples together as they moved from being homeless to find permanent places to live. Volunteer support is still a critical success factor for the Center. Initially, the Center was 100% volunteer run, and volunteers continue to be a critical part of the Centers success. Volunteers from numerous educational, religious, and service oriented organizations provide hot meals every evening during the residential dinner, bagged lunches for residents to take with them during the day, expertise to help residents with life skills development and clothing for residents who are in need. Once a month, Congregation B'nai Torah provides volunteers to cook, serve the meal (allowed 4 servers, and must be 12 years old or older), and/or donate money to purchase food. To learn more about the center, please visit Zaban Paradies Center.

Fri, December 4 2020 18 Kislev 5781