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Archive for : Labor

Thursday Link Roundup: Jewish American Heritage Month

In honor of Jewish American Heritage Month (which is May, for the record), President and First Lady Obama are hosting a reception at the White House tonight.

While the President’s office won’t disclose the full list of attendees, the evening will be packed with innovative Jewish leaders, including Rabbi Sharon Brous who heads up LA’s social justice-oriented spiritual community, IKAR, and Jewish Women’s Archives’ Executive Director, Gail Reimer. (And the amazingly talented Regina Spektor is slated to perform – but I digress.) To celebrate the month and this historic event, here are some inspiring bits from the Jewish service blogosphere. Enjoy!


  • (NY Jewish Week) After several years of planning, the Magen Tzedek (the ethical Jewish food certification pioneered by Rabbi Morris Allen) is nearly ready to hit the shelves.
  • (Dowser) Graduating from college, know someone who is, or just want an extra shot of hope? Check out these 5 inspiring graduation speeches from the last few years – featuring Muhammed Yunus, Bill Gates, Ellen Degeneres and Paul Hawken.
  • (BJPA) The Berman Jewish Policy Archive just hit a milestone: their 5,000th policy document is now online accessible to the public. Check them out here. With categories like social justice, women, youth engagement, social services, immigration and global responsibility, there’s plenty of fascinating service-relevant information out there, just waiting to be explored!
  • (Social Citizens) Check out this fascinating article on balancing idealism and pragmatism within a life of service.


  • (Tom’s of Maine) The environmentally-friendly company known for their natural toothpastes and other beauty products is giving away $100,000 to 5 non-profit organizations. Know a deserving org? Nominate them before July 2 here.

Speak Your Mind: Ma’yan Political Theater Takes the Stage

That’s Not Fair! Virtually everyone has uttered that phrase once before, and likely many times – when someone cuts in line or says something intentionally hurtful; or when a hidden societal injustice gets exposed. Last night, that ubiquitous cry was further illuminated at The JCC in Manhattan during, That’s Not Fair: a performance by The Ma’yan Political Theatre Apprentices.

The cast of eight performers – junior high and high school girls ranging from age 12 to 17 – were in fine form, weaving together theatre, puppetry and music in an ensemble exploration of tough questions surrounding privilege, power and oppression. “Most of the content was taken from things we experience in our every day lives,” said performer, Esther Lenchner. From there, they collaboratively created images and scenes (along with their artistic director, political theatre veteran Jenny Romaine) that educated the audience without forcing them to a particular viewpoint. “We don’t have all the answers,” said Dylan Corn – so we wanted to let the audience draw their own conclusions.

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Tuesday Link Roundup

In the week leading up to Passover, here are a few inspiring bits and stories from around the blogosphere…

  • SF Chronicle Vegetable gardens sprout around San Francisco – from the library to the police department, thanks to support and legislation from Mayor Gavin Newsome, and the work of many of the city residents and organizations who are determined to create a greener and healthier city.
  • Yes Magazine Rabbi Ted Falcon makes the connection between Passover and living a more conscious, aware, and free lives.
  • New York Times Sunday’s inspiring immigration rally on Washington draws tens of thousands of supporters and activists.
  • Huffington Post First Lady Michelle Obama makes a cartoon appearance on the Simpsons, standing up for high achieving students. “I got A’s back when A’s were hard to get,” she said. She also plugs organic gardening.
  • Jerusalem Post Hillel and City Year get a major shout out in the Jerusalem Post for their alternative spring break programs, and inspiring college kids to make a difference.
  • JTA Hear Sara Hurwitz talk in her own words about the growing role of women as spiritual leaders in the Orthodox movement. (See the video at the bottom of the post.)