Social Action

Tikkun Olam

Join Beth Chaim Congregation in our mission to have a deep compassion for one another by engaging in acts of Tikkun Olam, to repair a broken world.

Throughout the year, Beth Chaim works to make a difference in the lives of others through direct services, advocacy, and community projects. The following are some of the opportunities for social action in which our members have participated in the past year.

For information on how to be involved on any event, please see The Happenings newsletter, the calendar or contact us. We look forward to collaborating together.

Food barrels all year long
Food barrels all year long

EVENTS: Annual and Year Round

ANNUAL: High Holy Days Food Drive
It was an outstanding success, filling 12 bins of food items. We are so proud of or BCC community and especially our religious school, for their creativity and generosity. As part of the food drive, a challenge was made to all the kids and adults: using the food containers, create a design of a Jewish symbol,  Hebrew letter or word for our Food Drive Tzedakah Hall of Fame, then take a photo for posting online.  Here is a short video of all the creative ways that the food items were displayed.

food image v2

YEAR ROUND: Toiletries Drive 
We collect large, full size cosmetics and toiletries, as well as diapers, tissues and wipes for newcomer families of JCFS of the East Bay. Travel size toiletries are also accepted.

Donations are presented as a “Welcome Bag” including: toothbrushes/paste, soaps, combs, deodorant, dental floss and other basic items. Please bring your items to the drop box in the Beth Chaim foyer or to the office. 

JCFS of east bay

YEAR ROUND: Food Collections
When you step into our foyer, you might notice the large food collection barrels.  That’s because they’ve become a “permanent” fixture at our temple.  Beth Chaim is dedicated to helping those in need every day, and is proud to participate in the Community Food Drive Program.  Have a few extra cans or dry goods? We’ll take it. Drop off anytime during office hours, services, sunday school or whenever the Temple is open.


EVENTS: Monthly

JANUARY: Winter Nights Shelter
Beth Chaim Congregation and St. Timothy’s Episcopalian Church will be co-hosting the Winter Nights Shelter in February at St. Timothy’s Church in Danville. Each year, from October through June, the Winter Nights Shelter serves the most vulnerable segment of our community – homeless families with children. It takes a village of helping hands to provide them with a warm, safe haven during their two-week stay in Danville. This is the largest Tikkun Olam project of the year and our most special. Children and adults are invited to participate with meals, donating food or non-food items, tutoring / homework help, childcare, overnight help, or set up or clean up.  Read an article about Winter Nights Shelter that appeared in Alamo and Danville.

FEBRUARY: Contra Costa Interfaith Housing Dinner
This dinner is held at Garden Park Apartments in Pleasant Hill. Beth Chaim Congregation provides dinner for approx. 40-50 residents during their monthly community meeting at their community center in the apartment complex. Garden Park Apts. is the first permanent supportive housing program specifically for homeless families in Contra Costa County.

Beth Chaim Congregation also supports Contra Costa Interfaith Housing throughout the year by providing furnishings and tutoring for the residents on an as needed basis.

MARCH / APRIL: Jewish Family and Children’s Services-Passover Food Drive
Jewish Family and Children’s Services-Passover Food Drive.  Every year Beth Chaim collects Passover food for homebound seniors and people with disabilities. Beth Chaim is one of only two synagogues in the East Bay that participates in this project and last year, we collected enough food for 30 beautifully decorated (thanks to the Sunday school children) Passover bags for JFCS.

MAY: Social Action
May is a time when Social Action has worked with the Sunday school at Beth Chaim to find projects that reflect our values and can help others such as homeless toiletry bags, sandwich making for homeless shelters, clothes drives, etc. In the past, the 7th grade graduation class has worked on several Tikkun Olam projects that have benefitted the local homeless community.

JULY / AUGUST: Contra Costa Interfaith Housing
Backpack drive / school supply drive to benefit low income children starting school in the fall.

SEPTEMBER/ OCTOBER: Contra Cost County Food Bank
High Holy Day Food Drive that continues throughout the year. Beth Chaim collects non-perishable food items benefitting the food bank. Beth Chaim collects thousands of pounds of food each year.

NOVEMBER: Holiday Dinner Drive
BCC members have contributed generously over the years to the Holiday Dinner Drive. The goal of the drive is to raise enough funds for the Contra Costa Food Bank and other partnering organizations to provide Thanksgiving meals and baskets to all those in our community who are in need. Last year, to combat the lingering, challenging economic climate, BCC members continued to show their compassion by donating to this worthy program.

DECEMBER: Adopt a Family
Every holiday season, Beth Chaim provides much needed holiday gifts and gift cards for families from Uplift Family Services in Concord. Uplift Family Services helps over 30,000 children and family members recover from trauma-such as abuse, severe neglect, addiction, and poverty-each year. As one of the largest, most comprehensive behavioral and mental health treatment programs in California, the agency offers hope to individuals and families experiencing great difficulties. Beth Chaim families purchase and wrap the gifts along with help from our 7th grade religious school class. Our donations have helped many East Bay families celebrate the holiday season.