Gardening at Share Food Program

Kol Ami’s Social Action Committee has planned a volunteer afternoon in the Share gardens. We will be planting summer crops in the high tunnels, planting annual and perennial flowers throughout the garden/grounds, weeding beds, and spreading woodchips, all at safe distances. Ages 10 & above are welcome! Wear a mask, hat, and sunscreen. Bring a water bottle.

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Share Food Program

Pack and/or Distribution Opportunities at Share Food Program: Share Food Program needs volunteers to pack and/or deliver nutritious food to homebound seniors and distribution sites. Consider these opportunities. Feel free to forward this to family and friends. Signup is easy!  Pack Share Boxes: Pack boxes of nutritious food for local seniors who fall below 130% of the poverty line. These boxes are distributed to over 6,500 seniors each month across the region. For safety precautions there are wash stations, gloves, and room for social distancing. Sign up: https://www.sharefoodprogram.org/get-involved/packing/  Knock, Drop and Roll: Deliver nutritious food packages to homebound seniors and people with disabilities on Saturday mornings. Sign up: https://signup.com/go/LbZUcwW The Share Food Program is a nonprofit organization serving a regional network of community organizations engaged in food distribution, education, and advocacy. Share provides food to school lunch programs in Philadelphia and families in need in Philadelphia and surrounding counties. Your assistance is greatly appreciated! Our partnership continues to grow as individual members volunteer at Share.

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Parshat Behar – Shmita: Strangers and Temporary Residents Group Study

The next Shmita Sabbatical year starts Rosh Hashana 2021. What role might this biblical Sabbatical tradition play in approaching the economic, environmental and societal challenges we are facing today? We had 20 people in attendance for this Shabbat Behar Study, using Hazon sourcesheets and resources to put together a powerful session.

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SUPPORT LOCAL FARMS WITH YOUR FORK: Organic Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) at Congregation Kol Ami

In our 15th year, Congregation Kol Ami is proud to offer a Jewish Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program. We were the first in our region to align with Hazon, a national nonprofit that links Jewish tradition with environmental action. Through its CSA network, Hazon uses Jewish purchasing power to support local organic farmers, foster vibrant Jewish communities who care about environmental and educational issues, and examine food and environmental issues from a Jewish perspective. The Hazon CSA at Kol Ami partners with over 100 Amish and Mennonite organic farmers from Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative (LFFC). The diversity of crops among LFFC farmers ensures a good variety of fresh-picked seasonal produce each week. Enrollment keeps local sustainable farms and local food safe for future generations. Our CSA is comprised of members from the local community. We safely distribute fresh, locally grown, organic vegetables, fruit, eggs, cheese and herbal medicines each week on Tuesday evenings from the Congregation Kol Ami kitchen. The CSA at Kol Ami operates from late April through October for the Summer season, followed by a Fall season that ends in December. We are working on an alternative space in Elkins Park to distribute the CSA when we officially need to move due to the sale of our property. Learn more and register NOW: Select Pa: Kol Ami Hazon as first choice. If you must pick a second choice, do so and be aware that you will get the 1st choice: Kol Ami location! https://lancasterfarmfresh.com/product-category/shares/2021-summer-shares/ For questions, contact Robin @ Robinrifkin@comcast.net or Shelley @ Srchamberlain@comcast.net.

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Judaism in the Garden

We use our Temple Biblical garden as a workshop for Jewish values and to teach sustainability. With a wide variety of hands on activities, we use the garden to illustrate Jewish values, provide materials for Jewish rituals, and tell Jewish stories. As we do this work, we endeavor to model and reinforce the Jewish values for caring for and sustaining the Earth.

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Pico Union Community Engagement

Pico Union Project's compost from our emergency Covid-19 fresh produce distribution. Through our distribution which takes produce that otherwise would have been waste, is distributed to over 1500 families. The food that cannot be distributed goes to our community compost. Our volunteers who are all community members have learned how to compost, which produce and other items can be composted(e.g. toilet paper rolls, paper bags, cardboard) and how to maintain the compost. The compost is then used for our urban/community garden which has nourished the area that had been completed stripped of nutrients to plant trees and vegetation for the community. Creating tree canopy's for the community and herbs/vegetables that is then cooked for community. Our kitchen cooks plant-based meals to low-income individuals and distributes the recipe on how to recreate with produce at our distribution.

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High School Park Community Trash Pick-Up

Friends of High School Park was created by volunteers in 1995 and continues to be a special place in our community thanks to volunteers who help maintain and develop the park. The Park always welcomes people to help with upkeep and beautification. It’s also a great opportunity to get outside with your neighbors and meet someone new! Great time spent for “community service credits” too! Arrive at the shed beside the meadow a little before 10:00 a.m., weather permitting. We will work until noon.

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Composting

We provide evergreen winter blanket arrangements and summer floral planters on our cemetery plots. We average 13,000 winter blankets and 90,000 floral planters each year. At the end of the winter and fall seasons, we dispose of these items by means of dumpster waste removal. This year, we plan to utilize a composting disposal service to better benefit the environment.

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