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Congregation Shomrei Torah
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Postcarding for Democracy 2024


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In one of our oldest stories, God parted the Red Sea for us when we were in dire need.

But that story is incomplete. God didn’t, in fact, do anything until someone took the first step.

At the shores of the Red Sea, our flight from Egypt was blocked. An activist named Nachshon walked into the water until it came up to his neck and he was about to drown.

Only then did God split the sea.

Now, in this time when many feel afraid, we are asking for a few good Nachshons to turn back the tide of powerlessness.

Please join the Social Action Committee in our 2024 Postcarding for Democracy project.

We are asking each household to hand-write 20 postcards to help voters in Georgia get to the polls in November, overcoming a history of voter suppression.

Please pick up packets of postcards in Shalom Hall, but do not mail them. Drop your completed cards in the baskets on the Shalom Hall Postcarding for Democracy table.

If you need help getting or returning packets, contact the packet team.  SAC will mail the cards on October 1st.

The packets are free. Each packet contains 20 cards, 20 stamps, a list of 20 recipients with addresses, instructions and a script to hand-write get-out-the-vote information on the cards. There are also stickers with specific voting information. The text is nonpartisan.

 

We are working with Reclaim Our Vote, a national, nonprofit, nonpartisan group which helps voters in states with a documented history of voter suppression. Often, these voters are from rural communities of color.

In 2020, the CST community sent personalized postcards to 6,520 voters. The idea is that voters – bombarded with partisan, impersonal texts and robocalls - may appreciate and act on handwritten and hand-decorated postcards.

This year, our campaign will focus on Georgia. But we’re also thinking of CST. We hope to build community at CST along with voter turnout in Georgia.

Can you pick up a packet for a friend? Can you have friends over to write postcards? Can you do more than one packet?

Pick up your packet(s) in Shalom Hall at Friday night or Saturday morning services, at any regularly scheduled event, or by visiting CST Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday between 9 am to 1pm. 

The packets are free to the CST community, thanks to Rabbi George, who funded the first batch of 2,800 cards. But please Click here  help fund more packets. You may also put cash (no checks) in the donation box on the Postcarding for Democracy table in Shalom Hall.

Again, DO NOT MAIL completed cards. If you need help getting or returning packets, contact the packet team

Thank you in advance for stepping up.

“Stuck in a dangerous and frightening place, we can’t wait to be saved,” Rabbi George wrote.  “We must take action ourselves.”
 

Click here for more information on Reclaim Our Vote  |  Click here for more information on Voter Suppression

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Fall 2023 Series

Facing the Challenges... Together ("The Future") Presented on Nov 5th. This event was not recorded. In a community in conversation format, we explored ways minority communities can mutually support each other.



Racism: From Underground to "In Your Face" ("The Present") Presented on Oct 15th. Click Here to watch the recording. Antisemitism and anti-Asian racism is rising after staying underground for decades. How bad is it? How are we feeling the effects? How are our youth experiencing it? 



Sonoma Stories: Starting Over in a Strange Land ("The Past") Presented on Sep 10th. Click Here to watch the recording. Discover the fascinating histories of Jewish, Japanese, Chinese, and Filipino immigration to Sonoma County. 

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Spring 2023 Series

Latin Jewish history and the current experience of Latin Jews in the Bay Area with Jewtina y Co. Watch the Recording Here. Originally Aired January 22


Building an inclusive Jewish community for Black, African American, and mixed-race Jews with Be’chol Lashon. Watch the Recording Here. Originally Aired February 26


Sample an Asian Jewish Seder with LUNAR. Originally Aired March 11

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Click Here to volunteer for a shift at Elisha’s Pantry.

 

Check out a Social Action Committee meeting. For more info, contact the office.

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Social Action Committee Accomplishments in 2022 

January - August - We arranged and worked on the “Reclaim Our Vote” postcard campaign. Over 6500 postcards were sent to voters from Congregation Shomrei Torah.

June - Many Social Action committee members as well as other congregants marched in the annual Santa Rosa Gay Pride Parade. A phenomenal community event.

July - Several committee members attended the Reproductive Rights March in Santa Rosa. Some committee members participated in non-partisan political canvassing with NBOP in Petaluma.

October - Some individual members of the Social Action Committee did political canvassing work in Arizona, Nevada, and Central California.

November - We worked with the STaRS children and staff to prepare 500 bags of needed items to be handed out to those unsheltered in our community. A true mitzvah project for all of us. We will be doing more intergenerational work with the children into the new year.

December - We organized our annual successful Winter Clothing Drive for Elisha’s Pantry. Some committee members worked with the STaRS children at their annual Hannukah event.

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Ongoing SAC Projects

Elisha’s Pantry

We partner with Christ United Methodist Church and Bethlehem Lutheran Church to distribute food to people in need.  The pantry, which is at 1717 Yulupa Avenue, is open on Thursday afternoons. To sign up to work at the pantry, click here.

Other Projects

The Social Action Committee has presented films, forums, and panel discussions highlighting current issues. Past programs have addressed criminal justice reform, homelessness, election concerns, gun violence, money bail, immigration issues, the climate crisis and much more. If there is an issue of specific importance to you, please let us know – and join us. For more information, contact the CST office.

Social Action Resources

The Religious Action Center for Reform Judaism, California is a valuable resource with up-to-date analyses of key social justice topics through a Jewish lens. The RAC also has action guides for urgent social issues specifically within our state, read more.

Thu, July 18 2024 12 Tammuz 5784