Mitzvah Day

Mitzvah Day

Welcome to our half in-person, half virtual Mitzvah Day!

Join us for Mitzvah Day, an annual event at CBI that honors the spirit of both Tikkun Olam and Tzedakah, no matter the circumstances. This year we are offering a number of socially distanced projects as we ease back into “normal” life. We also have many opportunities to do good work from your home. Together, we can make a difference.

MITZVAH DAY!

Sunday, May 16, 2021

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

10:00 AM        Opening Minyan on Zoom
11:00 AM        Projects Begin

Due to social distancing protocols and best practices, attendance at some of these events is limited. As you sign up, please include EVERY member of your household who will be in attendance. Masks and social distancing measures will be required for the full duration of the program.

Click here to sign up for a service project

Whether out and about or at home, don’t forget to wear your stylish Mitzvah shirt!

Congregation Beth Israel is a community dedicated to connection and to action. Every day is Mitzvah Day!

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Mitzvah Day Learning Session (via Zoom)

VOTING RIGHTS & VOTER SUPPRESSION
Sunday, May 16, 11:00 AM
Click here for the Zoom link

Congregant Ron Silver will lead a learning and advocacy session on the history of voting rights and voter suppression in the United States. Learn about the opportunities our congregation will have in partnership with the Reform Movement’s federal advocacy focus on “Freedom to Vote.”

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Mitzvah Day Projects

FAMILY MITZVAH CENTER (in-person)

  • Location: CBI Plaza
  • Grades pre-K-2
  • The CBI Plaza will be turned into a socially distanced event, where there will be a variety of projects for our younger congregants – make care cards for Portland Backpack and dog/cat toys and dog treats for Oregon Humane Society
  • There are 3 time slots with 5 families per slot – 11:00-11:45, 12:00-12:45, 1:00-1:45 PM
  • Please sign up as a family and list family members attending in comment section of signup
  • Due to social distancing protocols and best practices, attendance at this event is limited. Sign up as a family and please include EVERY member of your household who will be in attendance. Masks and social distancing measures will be required for the full duration of the program.

Click here to sign up

FAMILY MITZVAH CENTER (at home)

  • Location: At Home
  • Grades Pre-K-2
  • Make care cards for Portland Backpack and dog/cat toys and dog treats for Oregon Humane Society
  • Pick up supplies with instructions at CBI at 9 am on Mitzvah Day morning

Click here to sign up

CASCADIA CLUSTERS (in-person)

  • Location: On Capital Highway, next to MJCC Bubble
  • 5th grade and up
  • Help with various building projects at Cascadia Clusters, an organization that builds tiny house communities and helps houseless people regain dignity & independence
  • There are 2 time slots with 8 volunteers per slot – 11:00-1:00, 1:00-3:00
  • Due to social distancing protocols and best practices, attendance at this event is limited. Masks and social distancing measures will be required for the full duration of the program.

Click here to sign up

CEMETERY CLEAN UP (in-person)

  • Location: 426 SW Taylors Ferry Road
  • All ages welcome; under age 14 must be accompanied by an adult
  • Clean marble headstones and basic gardening. Supplies & instructions on-site
  • There are 4 time slots with 4 families per slot – 11:00-12:00, 12:15-1:15, 1:30-2:30, 2:45-3:45
  • Due to social distancing protocols and best practices, attendance at this event is limited. Sign up as a family and please include EVERY member of your household who will be in attendance. Masks and social distancing measures will be required for the full duration of the program.

Click here to sign up

CLIMATE CHANGE PROJECT (online)
View Rabbi Cahana’s Earth Day Kabbalat Shabbat interview of  Dr. Camille Parmesan,   internationally recognized expert on the biological impacts of Climate Change.  

There Is No Planet B

The Torah teaches that humankind was created on Earth, in part, to care for and protect God’s creation (Genesis 2:15). The Talmudic concept of bal tashchit, “do not destroy,” was developed by the rabbis as an assertion of God’s holy ownership of the land. We show our commitment to Creation and to each other by preventing the destruction and degradation of our planet. As is said in a powerful Midrash, “Do not destroy My world, for if you do, there will be nobody after you to make it right again.” (Midrash Ecclesiastes Rabbah 7:13). It is our responsibility to preserve, protect, and nourish our planet. We have the power to take action to create a healthy and just future for ourselves and generations to come.
      –From the Religious Action Center (RAC) of Reform Judaism’s website content on environmental justice .

For your Mitzvah Day Climate Change Sign Up:

  • Commit to one or more actions to lessen your carbon footprint and or decrease your impact on the environment.
  • You choose what action to take. Suggestions are all around us; we’ve included some below.
  • Climate Change Commitments

Click here to sign up

GRAFFITI CLEAN UP (in-person)

  • Location: Around Portland
  • All ages welcome; under age 16 must be accompanied by an adult
  • Pick up graffiti cleaning kits at CBI at 11 am on Mitzvah Day and head out across the city, removing graffiti from public property – schools, parks, downtown
  • Click here for more details

Click here to sign up

PERIOD PRODUCTS PACKAGES (in-person)

  • Location: Congregant’s Home in Beaverton
  • Bat Mitzvah age and up
  • Beth Israel Sisterhood has formed a chapter of PERIOD.org.  to address and build awareness of period poverty.  To support this CBI has been collecting and donating menstrual products.
  • Assemble period product packages for Oregon Harbor of Hope, an organization addressing the most urgent needs of Portland’s houseless community.
  • Due to social distancing protocols and best practices, attendance at this event is limited. Masks and social distancing measures will be required for the full duration of the program.

Click here to sign up

PORTLAND BACKPACK (in-person)

  • Location: CBI Plaza
  • Grades 3-5
  • Assemble food sacks for Portland Backpack, an organization that serves children who are at risk of hunger by providing food sacks for weekend days
  • There are 3 time slots with 3 families per slot – 11:00-11:45, 12:00-12:45, 1:00-1:45
  • Due to social distancing protocols and best practices, attendance at this event is limited. Sign up as a family and please include EVERY member of your household who will be in attendance. Masks and social distancing measures will be required for the full duration of the program.

Click here to sign up

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Mitzvah Day Donations

Support our community partners! Please drop off your donations at the Schnitzer Family Center on the CBI Campus. Ring the bell to be buzzed in seven days a week from 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM between now and Mitzvah Day. 

BLANCHET HOUSE

NW TOWER & ANNEX

  • Donate liquid laundry detergent and liquid dish soap (not dishwasher) to our CBI neighbors

 OREGON HARBOR OF HOPE

  • Donate tampons, pads, panty liners (open boxes are okay), razors, and travel-size shampoo/conditioner to Oregon Harbor of Hope, an organization focused on addressing the most urgent and unmet needs of Portland’s houseless community

PORTLAND BACKPACK

And remember…please let us know how many items you intend to donate in the comment section of our signup.

Click here to sign up

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Gun Violence Prevention

On Mitzvah Day:

  • Sign petitions to advance measures to the Noevmber 2022 Orregon Ballot to ban the sales of semi-automatic assault weapons and high capacity magazines,  and to require background checks and gun safety instruction for licensing.
  • Signature gatherers will be on the CBI campus on Mitzvah Day. ‘
  • More info on petitions available here.

  Beyond Mitzvah Day: Want to do more?

  • Learn more about the campaign and register to circulate petitions or volunteer by clicking here.
  • Email us to join the CBI group working on Gun Violence Prevention; all ages are welcome to participate

 

Every Day is Mitzvah Day at CBI

Here are some of the mitzvot performed by congregants and staff in the last year.

  • Over $100,000 in donations to the Social Action Tribute Fundsdistributed since the beginning of the COVID Pandemic to organizations meeting the greatly increased needs of the past year (mostly food insecurity). This amount includes over $35,000 that was donated to the Robert Peltz (z”l) High Holidays Funds for Food.  
  • All our Bar and Bat Mitzvah celebrants engaged in mitzvah projectsthroughout the year as part of their Jewish responsibility curriculum.
  • Support for our neighbors at NW Tower and Annex – weekly assistance with the resident-run Sunday Food Pantry, maintenance of connections with the students and families of the Homework Club, “care packages” and holiday gifts for the kids    
  • Over 80 households participated in “Every Voice, Every Vote”writing over 5600 “Reclaim Our Vote” postcards prior to the November 2020 elections to combat voter suppression. Participation also in phone/text banks. Same activities for January 2021 Georgia State elections. 
  • Chanukah collection of donations of cooking oil (a scarce item at food banks).
  • “Share the Light” Chanukah programhighlighting the work of 5 non-profit organizations – Urban Gleaners, Lift Urban Portland, Cascadia Clusters, Stone Soup and Blanchet House. The first four of these were founded by CBI members.  Blanchet House has had several CBI members engaged as regular volunteers, most starting in the past year.  
  • Donations to help victims of the Almeda Fire in Southern Oregon.
  • Knit-a-Mitzvah volunteers knit beautiful hats and scarves for distribution in December to recipients of Lift Urban Portland food boxes and NW Towers residents. 
  • Collection of menstrual products to address and build awareness of period poverty.