As we enter into the month of Elul – the month leading up to the high holidays – self-reflection is on the brain. Did we live the past year in the way that we hoped? Where are we now, and where might we like to be in the coming year, personally, professionally, spiritually and inter-relationally?

Amichai Lau Lavie, founder of the organization Storahtelling thought up (and will be blogging daily over at about) the brilliant notion of pre-penting: “a 40-day self-reflection project, a journey/crash course/blog/conversation, off and online.” Check it out over at Jewcy, and to get your started in a reflective mindset for today, here are some service related stories and opportunities to get involved from around the blogosphere.


  • (JTA) The media has been buzzing lately about billionaires Bill Gates and Warren Buffet’s commitment to give away vast amounts of their fortunes to charity, and their call to the world’s other uber-elite to do the same. JTA’s philanthropy blogger, The Fundermentalist looks at the dozens of Jewish millionaires and billionaires who took the pledge.
  • (Rocket Lance) An online job board for freelance computer developers takes a look at the company’s real impact – and decides to make some positive changes.
  • (Jewish Agency for Israel) A group of people from the Jewish Federation in Rhode Island travelled to Israel to meet the people behind the programs they support.
  • (Learn and Serve) An inspiring personal essay about choosing to do service-learning. (And an opportunity to share your own service-learning story.)
  • (Forward) A sweet and funny poem about the three Jewish Supreme Court Justices.


  • (Global Giving) Give financial support to the people impacted by the recent flooding in Pakistan. Just $15 will help provide a whole family with necessary personal hygiene supplies.