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

Mar
16
Mon
EDCJCC Building Closed
Mar 16 – Mar 31 all-day

In keeping with the recommendations by the DC Department of Health, and in an effort to do our part to protect the health and safety of our community, we will be closing the Edlavitch DCJCC building for all programs effective 11:00 PM this coming Sunday, March 16 which plans to reopen Wednesday, April 1. Details for all programs are listed below.

Preschool and Aftercare
Preschool will be closed until April 1. Starting March 23, students will participate in distance learning prepared by their teachers. There will no longer be a Spring Break period in April; however, we will still be closed on April 9, 10, 15, and 16 for Passover.

Early Childhood, Youth, and Family
All Early Childhood, Youth, and Family programs, including the Parenting Center, J Family Ambassadors, and After School program, are closed until April 1.

Theater J
The Theater J productions of The Wanderers  scheduled for this weekend, March 14-15, will go on as planned, and audiences are encouraged to practice social-distancing. This is in accordance with Mayor Bowser’s request not to hold gatherings of over 250 people.

The production of Becoming Dr. Ruth will begin previews on April 1, instead of March 27.

JxJ
Starting today, March 13, all JxJ year-round screenings will be cancelled until April 1. As of today, there is no change to the schedule for the JxJ Festival.

Engagement and Social Responsibility Programs
All programs for EntryPointDC, Jewish Living & Learning, Inclusion & Disabilities, the Morris Cafritz Center for Social Responsibility, and GLOE – The Kurlander Program for GLBTQ Outreach and Engagement, are cancelled until April 1.

Fitness Center
The Fitness Center and Pool are closed to all members until April 1. This includes personal training and group exercise classes.

Rentals & Worship Groups
All rentals will need to be postponed until a later date. Until April 1, we are unable to accommodate the worship groups that meet at the EDCJCC.

We will continue to pay our hourly and salaried employees during this closure.

We are not yet issuing refunds for programs. If you would like to convert your registration fee into a donation, please consider completing this form; otherwise, we will be in touch at a later date.

As we all know, this is a rapidly evolving situation.  This decision has been made out of an abundance of caution. There have been no reported cases of any individuals who have visited the EDCJCC testing positive.  We will continue to update you as the situation progresses, and urge you to visit www.edcjcc.org/covid19 for other actions we’ve taken and resources on how to prevent getting sick.

We thank you for your patience and understanding, and for helping us keep our community safe and healthy.

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.