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Or Shalom has a strong contingent of members who express their Jewish heritage through a wide spectrum of social justice work—from vegetarianism and food justice to environmental and climate action to prison reform work and refugee support with Bay Area interfaith groups. Or Shalom has several active Social Action teams under the umbrella of our Tikkun Olam Committee, such as Interfaith Action, Safety Net Action, and our Dayenu Circle for climate action.

To learn more about the reasons we believe so strongly in working for social change, please read our Statement of Tikkun Olam in Our Times and the Or Shalom Jewish Community Statement Against Racism.

Organizations that are currently taking action on behalf of social justice can be seen in our Social Action Allies section.

Learn more about or Shalom's Past social action involvement 

Community Engagement – Tikkun Olam  


Or Shalom has partnered with Faith in Action to clarify our social action interests and more effectively organize our Tikkun Olam activities. As a result of engagement with our membership through a Listening Campaign, we developed committees to carry out work and a leadership structure.  Active committees are Southside Jewish Collaborative, Interfaith Action, Safety Net Action and Immigration Action.  Each committee sends a representative to our Tikkun Olam Committee (TOC) that includes the President, Rabbi and Social Action Fellow.  Using Board developed guidelines the TOC hears and vets proposals for social action and runs a social action calendar for OS.  TOC is responsible to the Board and relieves the Board of the day to day management of our social action. 



Bag Lunches – Or Shalom is a member of the Southside Jewish Collaborative with Ner Tamid, B’nai Emunah and Beth Israel Judea.  In non-COVID times, we gather once a month for a lunch-and-learn and make 150 bag lunches for the needy.  Two Sundays a year we make 250 bag lunches, and four times a year make bag lunches with the religious school children.  Total is more than 2,000 bag lunches each year.

Volunteering – OS sponsors volunteer opportunities at the San Francisco Food Bank, St. Anthony’s

Dining Room, Jewish Family and Childrens Services and St. Boniface/Winter Shelter.

Speakers – the Collaborative sponsored a speaker on Homelessness at a Shabbat evening service.

Book Drive, etc. – The Collaborative conducted a book drive for the SF Public Library, as well as

kitchen ware, cosmetics and clothing drives for St. Anthony’s and other local agencies.

Immigration – Through our membership with Faith in Action:

Do accompaniment work with immigrants at ICE and Court appointments

Helped develop Freedom Escuela

Helped train SFUSD personnel to initiate emergency plan training for immigrant families



Marched as a community in 2018, 2019,  and 2020 Womens’ Marches, Gay Pride Parade (including a Pride Shabbat),

MLK March (with SF Unity), Climate Action March, Gun Show Protests, Gun Control March for Our Lives, protest at ICE offices in San Francisco and participated with the Poor Peoples’ Campaigns Moral Monday Protests in Sacramento and protested at the West County Detention Center in Richmond in support of imprisoned immigrants.

Led a Mission Night Walk Witness Against Violence followed by a potluck Shabbat dinner.

Canvased neighborhoods surrounding mosques delivering window signs declaring solidarity with Muslims.

Petition Drives: collected signatures for $15 per hour minimum wage and to reform California property tax law to better fund schools and other public services.

Voting: conducted voter registration drives at City College of San Francisco and various high schools and held a midterm voter education evening at Or Shalom. Called voters and potential voters to help them find out how to register.

Study: Weekly Torah Study in the summer led by our Social Justice Fellow focused on Social Action.



Visited Mosques for interfaith discussions, and Iftar celebrations.

Brought Mishloach Manot baskets at Purim to six of our interfaith partners.

Worked with SF Unity group

Hosted interfaith partners at our community Passover Seder and during High Holy Days and for meals in our Sukkah, and attended the JCC’s multicultural Seder.  Hosted presentations at Shabbat evening services on Islamophobia, African Asylum seekers in Israel and faith communities working for social justice.



Hosted a panel discussion featuring local activists and investment advisors about how individuals could respond to climate change.

Or Shalom is a member of Interfaith Power and Light, a network of congregations who share a belief that global warming is a moral issue that our country must address from the perspective of our shared values. 

Our Dayenu Circle is a part of the national Dayenu! Jewish Call to Climate Action, dedicated to building a movement to confront the climate crisis, rooted in Jewish values, experience, and spirit.



Developed a Domestic Violence Response Policy for Or Shalom in cooperation with Shalom Bayit.



Held educationals at Or Shalom about Universal Health Care.  Developed an Or Shalom faith perspective on universal healthcare (attached).  Distributed the Perspective to Bay Area synagogues and other faith institutions. Presented the Perspective to the Faith in Action leadership meeting and at the Poor Peoples’ Campaign Moral Monday on healthcare.  Presented the Perspective for use by the California Nurses Association in their faith based outreach for Medicare for All.    

Thu, March 30 2023 8 Nisan 5783