Giving Back During Thanksgivukkah

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Edited by David Fisher

HandsCelebrate the abundance of life this Thanksgivukkah by investing your time and/or resources in the Greater Boston community and beyond. You can help make this Thanksgiving, Hanukkah and holiday season a warm, fulfilling and meaningful time for all. Here are eight opportunities, one for each night of Hanukkah:

VOLUNTEER AT ROSIE’S PLACE

Apply to serve as a volunteer at Rosie’s Place to help women maintain their dignity, seek opportunity and find security in their lives. Rosie’s Place volunteers join a volunteer orientation session and then sign up for shifts using a simple online system.

Volunteers play a vital role in ensuring that the guests of Rosie’s Place receive important services in a welcoming atmosphere. Here are some of the ways volunteers help out:

  • Teach an English as a Second Language class to adult women (read more about what it’s like to volunteer as a teacher)
  • Spend an hour each week as a “Friendly Visitor”; play cards or talk with a lonely woman in her home or assisted living facility (read Courtney’s story about her visits with Elizabeth)
  • Serve and clean up lunch or dinner with women in the dining room
  • Teach an arts workshop
  • Help women select groceries in the food pantry

More information is available at rosiesplace.org/volunteer.

SPONSOR A MEAL FOR JEWISH AMERICAN TROOPS

Troops

Troops celebrate with a Hanukkah care package.

Send kosher meals and holiday packages to Jewish troops overseas. Kosher Troops connects generous Americans with Jewish troops around the globe through holiday and Shabbat packages. Sponsor a Hanukkah package and read about how other individuals and organizations have become involved. Kosher Troops sponsors packages throughout the year; this is a great way to stay connected with those serving the country overseas.

VISIT THE THANKSGIVING VOLUNTEERISM CALENDAR ON BOSTON.COM

Boston.com has assembled a series of volunteer opportunities connected with Thanksgiving, posted on the site’s event calendar. Check it out to see what fits your interests and schedule.

PARTNER WITH JEWISH FAMILY & CHILDREN’S SERVICE

Jewish Family & Children’s Service’s Family Table program is the largest kosher food pantry in New England. You can join them for food distribution this holiday season and throughout the year. Find the food distribution calendar, including holiday dates, here. Learn more about volunteering opportunities throughout the year here.

SHARE YOUR TIME WITH COMMUNITY SERVINGS

Volunteers help out in the Community Servings kitchen.

Join the Community Servings Thanksgiving delivery team! The team is looking for volunteers to help deliver Thanksgiving meals with all the trimmings on Wednesday, Nov. 27, to individuals and families living with critical illnesses. Volunteers will need their own vehicle and GPS in order to deliver. Having a partner to help with deliveries is not required but will make the job a bit easier. If you would like to be a delivery volunteer, please sign up online here. Only one volunteer per vehicle needs to register (so if you plan on volunteering with a partner, only one person needs to sign up).

JOIN REACHOUT!

Join young Jewish adults from around Greater Boston in once-a-month community service through the JCRC of Greater Boston’s ReachOut! program. The next cycle starts Oct. 13.

CONNECT WITH THE BOSTON PUBLIC HEALTH COMMISSION

The Development and Volunteer Services Department of The Homeless Services Bureau enlists the community in the fight to end homelessness. Through this work, the Boston Public Health Commission seeks support for its programs and educates the community about homelessness and hunger. There are many ways for both individuals and groups to volunteer. Find volunteer opportunities and a donation wish list here.

SEARCH BOSTON CARES

Haven’t found the volunteer opportunity that suits your unique abilities and needs? Boston Cares mobilizes more than 25,000 volunteers annually in support of Greater Boston schools and non-profit agencies. The site offers a wide array of programs and opportunities that make it easy for you to volunteer, no matter how busy your schedule is.

David Fisher works part-time at JewishBoston.com, as well as serving as the director of Project CALL. Project CALL brings together youth from Boston and central Appalachia through dialogue, service and leadership to foster multicultural collaboration. He is proud to live in the city where he grew up and is a family-oriented, vegan Jew. Contact David at davidf@cjp.org.

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