Social Justice

Social Justice

The Edlavitch DCJCC’s Morris Cafritz Center for Community Service not only offers direct volunteer opportunities, but aims to educate the public about the systemic social justice issues present in our city that impact our neighbors.

Programs include workshops, trainings, panels, and other experiential learning opportunities on topics including affordable housing, food deserts, the #METOO movement, gun violence prevention, immigration and refugees, and structural racism in our legal system.

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 make change.

Upcoming Social Justice Events

Apr
2
Tue
Environmental Gentrification: The Case of Anacostia (Workshop)
Apr 2 @ 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

The Anacostia River—one of the most polluted rivers in the US for decades—has long been the dividing line of income inequality in DC. In the past few years, the city has invested heavily in cleaning up the river, bringing development to its shores – in fact, the banks of the Anacostia are currently DC’s fastest-growing area. But as housing prices increase, those who have lived along the banks of the river and suffered its environmental effects are being pushed out, just as the river is finally getting clean. Learn about how environmental gentrification and the affordable housing crisis are affecting our neighbors living on the banks of DC’s iconic river.

A vegetarian dinner will be served.

This is the first part of a two-part series. We hope you will also consider attending Part 2 when we will be doing a clean-up of the northern part of the Anacostia River.

We request a $12 registration fee to help cover the costs of the program. If this is in any way a hardship please email Sonya.

In partnership with Avodah: The Jewish Service Corps, Tzedek DC, Operation Understanding DC, Jews United for Justice, and the Capital Jewish Museum.

Avodah Tzedek DCOperation Understanding DC

JUFJ logo


Apr
28
Sun
Anacostia River Clean-up
Apr 28 @ 8:30 am – 11:00 am

Join us for part 2 of our Anacostia River series to learn more about the river’s ecological and environmental challenges, and then get in and do some cleaning up to make it safer for all to enjoy. We will meet at the Anacostia River Boat Ramp just inside Anacostia Park to pick up trash and debris and then take a boat tour with the Anacostia Riverkeeper staff to learn more about the river and the communities on its banks.

We will provide everything you need to do the trash clean-up but please wear long pants, long sleeves, and closed-toe shoes. Please also only wear clothing you do not mind getting dirty. We recommend that you bring a water bottle, sunscreen, and a hat as well.

Children of all ages are welcome but children under the age of 14 must be accompanied by an adult.

If you have any questions please email Sonya.

In partnership with Avodah: The Jewish Service Corps, Tzedek DC, Operation Understanding DC, Jews United for Justice, and the Capital Jewish Museum.

Avodah Tzedek DCOperation Understanding DC

JUFJ 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.