Social Justice

Social Justice

The Edlavitch DCJCC’s Morris Cafritz Center for Social Responsibility not only offers direct volunteer opportunities, but provides educational programming to address the systemic social justice issues that impact our city.

Programs include workshops, trainings, panels, and other experiential learning opportunities on topics such as affordable housing, food security, climate change, gun violence prevention, immigration and refugees, and structural racism.

While we are not an advocacy-focused organization, we strive to provide individuals with the knowledge and tools to engage with social justice issues they care about and empower them to make change.

*In an effort to decrease our environmental footprint, the Morris Cafritz Center for Social Responsibility serves only vegan food at our programs.*

Upcoming Social Justice Events

Mitzvah May Marathon
May 1 – May 31 all-day

During the month of May, EntryPointDC and the Morris Cafritz Center for Social Responsibility is challenging our young adult community to perform as many mitzvahs (good deeds) for our local community and the world as we can during this difficult time. Grab your friends and make a team or we will match you with others in your neighborhood to do virtual volunteering together!

When you sign up, you will receive a list of different volunteer opportunities with a “how-to” for each one, along with different ice breakers and fun activities you can pair each volunteer opportunity. There’s something for everyone – whether you like to write and want to be a guest blogger to crafting, meal packaging, and making calls to Holocaust survivors in Israel!

May 4: Mitzvah May Marathon Kick-Off – you will be sent your team roster and a list of volunteer acitivties and ice breakers you can do together throughout the month

May 18: Virtual Trivia Night – an evening of fun + learning with your teammates

June 1: Virtual Ice Cream Party and Celebration – we will share a slide show of all of our good deeds and virtually mingle in small groups…we also hope to have some sweet surprises for you!

Container Gardening + Food Justice with Afro Beets
May 31 @ 4:00 pm – 5:15 pm

Create your own container garden while learning about food justice in DC with activist and urban gardener extraordinaire, Christin Riddick of Afro Beets! Christin will take us through a step by step process of creating a container garden complete with tips and tricks for what to plant, how much to water, and how to get the most out of a small urban gardening space indoors or outdoors. Christin will also discuss the racial and geographic inequities embedded in food access in the District, and how you can get involved in food justice activism!

Participants will walk away with a guide and resources on container gardening along with action steps on getting involved in food justice around DC.

About Afro Beets: Afro Beets is your source for garden to table content inspired by culture and soul. We educate our people with the tools to produce their own food, cook healthy and delicious plant-based meals and take a natural/ holistic approach to wellness. Because everyone should have access to good food regardless of their zip code.

In partnership with Avodah: the Jewish Service Corps

This is Hunger: A Conversation with Mazon
Jun 9 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

This is Hunger is a powerful, immersive digital video experience that explores who struggles with hunger in America and why. MAZON and the EDCJCC invite you to learn about what hunger looks like for millions of Americans by virtually “meeting” individuals who have experienced food insecurity. After watching This is Hunger together, we will engage in interactive activities and discussions about how MAZON is working to ensure that Americans facing hunger have the assistance they need, throughout the COVID-19 crisis and beyond – as well as how you can take action from your own home, and mobilize your community to do the same.

About Mazon: Inspired by Jewish values and ideals, MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger is a national advocacy organization working to end hunger among people of all faiths and backgrounds in the United States and Israel.

In partnership with Mazon

Mazon Logo

Recommended Reading

There is a rich body of literature examining the cross-section of Judaism and social justice. Whether you’re newly interested in these topics or an avid scholar, we recommend a few titles from movement leaders in our community.

Where Justice Dwells
A Hands-On Guide to Doing Social Justice in Your Jewish Community
By Rabbi Jill Jacobs

Judaism and Justice
The Jewish Passion to Repair the World
By Rabbi Sid Schwarz

Pirkei Avot: A Social Justice Commentary
By Rabbi Dr. Shmuly Yanklowitz

Past Programs

Be the Change: An Activism Workshop
In an ever-changing world, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by both local and global issues. This training will break down the basics of activism, including strategies for effective storytelling, lobbying, and digital media, plus tips for planning or participating in a rally. Learn from experienced activists, and connect with others who want to make positive change in our community. This event is in partnership with 6th and I.

On My Mind/In My Heart: the Voices of Women in Public Housing
Join us for a unique evening of advocacy and theater. On My Mind/In My Heart: the Voices of Women in Public Housing invites you into the lives and experiences of real women living in DC’s public housing. Developed by playwright Caleen Sinnette Jennings (Queens Girl in the World) and set to a soundtrack by DC’s own DC RBI, this play includes themes of housing justice, disability, loss, and leadership. This is the only performance scheduled for Northwest Washington.

The Global Refugee Crisis: Out of the Headlines and into our Hearts and Haggadot
With more than 65 million refugees and displaced people worldwide, the global refugee crisis is worse than any time in history as victims of persecution and violence around the world flee home in search of safety. Learn about this staggering crisis and how the US is responding. We will also explore the stories of today’s refugees and find ways to weave their stories into our upcoming Passover celebrations. This interactive program will be facilitated by Rabbi Rachel Grant Meyer, Director of Education at HIAS. In partnership with AVODAH: The Jewish Service Corp.

To the Rescue: Providing Legal Aid to DC’s Underserved
Meet Tzedek DC, a new Jewish organization providing legal services to low-income individuals, and the Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless for an evening of dialogue and learning on the issue of legal access and racial justice for DC residents. The Washington Legal Clinic will facilitate a workshop on gentrification and the sources of power in our city, and participants will have the opportunity to get involved in fighting for the rights of our DC neighbors. In partnership with the JCRC and AVODAH.

Ending Chronic Homelessness: The Way Home
On a given night in the District, approximately 1,500 people are experiencing chronic homelessness. Join the EDCJCC, Holy Trinity Catholic Church, and Moishe House DC to hear a personal account of homelessness in DC, learn more about the issue, and find out how you can take concrete action to end this social injustice through the work of Miriam’s Kitchen.