Center For Community Engagement

Get Involved!

Do you believe every person has value? Are you driven to positively impact the world? Or perhaps you find yourself asking, “How can I help?” If so, you’ve come to the right place. Volunteer your time. Donate to disaster relief. Support an affinity group. Or, stand up for those who may not have a voice. However you choose to help, it all adds up to a big difference to the people in our community and beyond. Come together to make an impact in the lives of those around you by immersing yourself in one of our community engagement initiatives.

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)

Enjoy the benefits of Community Supported Agriculture at the JCC. Invest in your share from Garden of Eve Farm in Riverhead and receive fresh, seasonal organic produce through November. At Sid Jacobson JCC Pick up every Wednesday 3-7pm Sign Up




“A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees.” – Amelia Earhart At the heart of Sid Jacobson JCC are our volunteers. Community members of all ages can volunteer time and skills to give back. In June 2018, we recognized our volunteers and celebrated 12,000 hours of service! We will help you find the volunteer opportunities that are right for you and match your busy schedule. Interested in volunteering? Fill out our application!


MLK DAY OF SERVICE Join us as we honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s legacy and make it a ‘day on’ rather than a day off. We will be assembling healthy and individually wrapped meals for those in need. Advance registration required. Monday, January 21 10am: Volunteer registration and breakfast 11am-1pm: Food packaging Register CRAFT FOR A CAUSE: KNITTING Community members are welcome to join Knitzvah, to help knit and crochet 8 inch squares. Every square will be used to make lap blankets for individuals starting chemotherapy treatment at St. Francis Hospital. Instruction is available. Tuesdays, 7-9pm CRAFT FOR A CAUSE: CASE FOR SMILES SEWING Ryan’s Case for Smiles helps with the stress and emotional impact of illness in the here and now by giving children an emotional boost with the whimsical pillowcases created. Join us as we sew, create and package pillowcases to give to children who are hospitalized. Instruction is available. An Andrea and Robert Fortunoff Art for Community Project. Tuesdays, 7-9pm QUILTING Quilt placemats and table settings to help bring a feeling of home during lunch for those attending our specialized senior services. Instruction is available. An Andrea and Robert Fortunoff Art for Community Project. Tuesdays, 7-9pm SUPPORT OUR MILITARY FAMILIES COUPON CLIPPING CLUB Drop off coupons, organize, and prepare for mailings to support our troops and military families. Mondays, December 3, January 7 3:30pm FRIENDLY VISITING PROGRAM Connects isolated seniors and volunteers to form mutually rewarding relationships. Weekly visits often include a cup of coffee, a game of cards, talk about daily news, exchange of stories, and more. CARING CALLS Call a homebound senior and brighten their day with friendly conversation. VIRTUAL SENIOR CENTER Help decrease social isolation for seniors in the community by facilitating a class using Google chat technology. Classes can be led from the JCC or your home/office. COMMUNITY THEATRE Love the theatre but prefer to work behind the scenes? Volunteer positions are available for adults and teens. SPECIAL NEEDS Volunteer to work with children, teens and adults in our after-school programs or as a job coach in the JCC’s Vocational Training and Employment Center (VTEC). CAREER SERVICES Lead workshops on topics such as resume writing, career development and skill-building. COLLECTION DRIVES We pride ourselves on trying to provide assistance to our community partners throughout the year. Please refer to the Collection Drive calendar tab below when dropping off your donations. For additional places you can donate items to, please visit our Local Resources tab below.

In Need



“How wonderful it is that no one need wait a single moment to start to improve the world.” – Anne Frank Rooted in our mission is the understanding of our Jewish identity, the appreciation of human diversity and a commitment to tikkun olam, repairing the world. Below is a list of disaster relief efforts we are holding and a list of resources in order to help communities in need. All Hands Volunteer IsraAID Nechama, Jewish Response to Disaster The Jewish Federation of North America UJA Federation


For a list of local organizations and food pantries, please visit our Local Resources tab below.




“Darkness can’t drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate can’t drive out hate, only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King, Jr. As a way to help support those looking to connect, engage and take action on the issues that face many communities across the world, including our own, Sid Jacobson JCC has compiled a list of organizations dedicated to the education of constructive social engagement and social responsibility. ACLU:  FAQ on Your Right to Protest AJWS Get Involved Page Anti-Defamation League Bend the Arc: A Jewish Partnership for Justice HIAS Action Page HIAS Current Action Alert Leadership Conference: Tips on Calling Your Member of Congress Moms Demand Action – NY National Council of Jewish Women’s Action Alerts Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism Tablet’s Jewish Groups Across the Spectrum Recently, our country has faced a wave of troubling times and acts of hate. In an age where facts and truth are assaulted and moral equivalence overrides right from wrong, we, along with 50 synagogues and JCCs across Long Island, united to sign a collective statement that hate has no home on our Island, or around the world. Our Collective Statement Against Hate JCRC’s New Yorkers United Against Hate Statement

HELP REMOVE HOLOCAUST DENIAL PAGES FROM FACEBOOK Sid Jacobson JCC is disseminating the petition created by the Holocaust Learning and Education Fund, Inc ( HLEF), Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect and the Association of Holocaust Organizations, demanding the removal of Holocaust Denial Pages from Facebook. Given Facebook’s recent decision to eliminate Russian bots, fake news intended to encourage violence, and pages that disseminate falsehoods, we cannot accept the comment of CEO Mark Zuckerberg who was quoted as saying “there’s a set of people who deny that the Holocaust happened. I find that deeply offensive. But at the end of the day, I don’t believe that our platform should take that down because I think there are things that different people get wrong. I don’t think that they’re intentionally getting it wrong.” (for the full story, visit here.) We, at Sid Jacobson JCC, like Jews and Jewish organizations all over the world, know that Holocaust deniers are intentional in their deception. Please take the time to review this issue and read the article penned by Deborah Lipstadt, who successfully defeated Holocaust denier David Irving in a trial that was turned into the well-regarded film, ‘Denial’. Watch the video created by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum to understand the relevance of Holocaust denial, and the video created by the Claims Conference to hear the pleads of Holocaust survivors. Then, if you are inclined, please add your name to the thousands of people who have already added their names to the petition.

GROUPS Wish to mobilize an affinity group? Contact Susan Berman Sid Jacobson JCC is not affiliated with, nor have we organized or administered these programs, unless otherwise stated, and do not take credit or responsibility for the content published therein.  

We The



“Democracy cannot succeed unless those who express their choice are prepared to choose wisely. The real safeguard of democracy, therefore, is education.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt Our goal is to educate, engage and enlighten the community. We’re in this together. Our newest initiative, We The People, unites great minds in and around the community to engage in meaningful dialogue about pressing issues facing us, and our world, today. Here, you have a voice, free from judgment. Here, we discuss the issues on our minds at the local and broader level through advocacy trainings, issue-based education and civic connection opportunities while meeting our mission to seek out balanced solutions. The goal: to effect change that will result in a better life for all.

STRONGER THAN HATE: STANDING TOGETHER WITH PITTSBURGH + THE TREE OF LIFE SYNAGOGUE We express our solidarity with the Jewish community in Pittsburgh and shared grief with those who have been injured or lost loved ones. These senseless killings also evoke our outrage at the increase in anti-Semitic incidents and hate crimes around the country. UJA-Federation of New York has set up a Pittsburgh Solidarity Fund where 100% of funds received will be used to help the victims and the Pittsburgh community. To donate to the Pittsburgh Solidarity Fund, click here. A verified GoFundMe page is also collecting donations to help the Tree of Life Synagogue victims. To donate to the GoFundMe page, click here.

THE YOUNGER-ONSET ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE PARITY ACT On Monday, July 30, 2018, U.S. Representative Kathleen Rice announced the introduction of the Younger-Onset Alzheimer’s Disease Parity Act, which would amend the Older Americans Act of 1965 (OAA) to serve individuals who are under the age of 60 years-old but living with Young Onset Alzheimer’s disease or other neurodegenerative diseases. Approximately 250,000 Americans in their 30s, 40s, and 50s are diagnosed with Young Onset Alzheimer’s. As a result of the current law, this population and their caregivers do not have access to the vital OAA programs and services placing a significant financial strain on these young families. Take action!

  • Write, call, and visit your representatives to ensure these deserving young families have access to affordable support services like those offered under the OAA.
  • Impact our participants today! You can help our affected families by making a donation, in any amount,  directly to Sid Jacobson JCC.

If you or someone you know is affected by Young Onset Alzheimer’s and are in need of services, please visit Specialized Adult + Senior Services.

GUN CONTROL RESOURCES Rabbis Against Gun Violence Religious Action Center’s Gun Violence Prevention Reform Judaism’s Jewish Resources for Coping with Florida Shooting Everytown for Gun Safety Our licensed social workers are here to offer support. For more information, contact Michelle Laser, LCSW, Director of Social Services, 516-484-1545 ext. 200,

Congregation Tifereth Israel’s Reflections on Parkland Shootings


  • RAICES the largest immigration nonprofit in Texas. For their fundraising drives click here.
  • LEAF Project (Legal Representation, Education, and Advocacy), provides legal representation to unaccompanied minors (and those reclassified as unaccompanied after being separated from their parents at the border) For more information, click here.
  • #FREEourfamilies Family Reunification Bond Fund, provides funds to pay for detainees’ bond (which starts at $1,500 a person) so that they can be reunited quickly with their families. For more information, click here.
  • Evelyn Rubenstein JCC in Houston  order from Amazon and have the items delivered to Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley, 1721 Beaumont Ave., McAllen, TX 78501.
  • HIAS
  • Mercy First, since 1894, MercyFirst has been providing care for children and families in need. Immigrant children separated from their families are currently being on Long Island at MercyFirst in Syosset. MercyFirst is a not-for-profit human service agency serving more than 3,200 children, teenagers and families each year in Brooklyn, Queens, Nassau and Suffolk counties. Founded as an orphanage in the late 1800s by the Sisters of Mercy (Angel Guardian Home in Brooklyn and St. Mary’s of the Angels Home in Syosset) today MercyFirst offers a continuum of care through its network of programs in New York City and on Long Island.

To find your representative, click here. JEWISH COMMUNITY RELATIONS COUNCIL OF NEW YORK’S SEPARATED FAMILIES RESOURCES Local non-profit organizations that are currently caring for children placed in the New York City Area include:

Local organizations providing legal and social service support to children placed in the New York City Area include:

Know of an event? Contact Jaime Krinsky to submit the listing Sid Jacobson JCC is not affiliated with, nor have we organized or administered these programs, unless otherwise stated, and do not take credit or responsibility for the content published therein.  

of New York



“The degree to which one is sensitive to other people’s suffering, to other (people’s) humanity, is the index of one’s own humanity.” – Abraham Joshua Heschel UJA is the world’s leading local philanthropy. They solve problems through collective action, bringing people and nonprofits together to impact the issues that matter most to us as Jews and New Yorkers. That’s how we change the lives of 4.5 million people a year.


Join thousands of New Yorkers as we gather to serve communities all across New York. We’ll be volunteering on projects that address vital community needs. Sign up on UJA’s new volunteer platform, Time for Good, New York’s go-to place for volunteerism. You can find all of Sid Jacobson JCC’s volunteer opportunities here.


UJA-Federation of New York’s Engage Jewish Service Corps is for boomers and beyond to use their skills to help those in need. Whether you are retired, an empty nester or transitioning to a new stage of life, we invite you to become part of this inspiring cohort. In addition to volunteerism, being a part of Engage gives you the opportunity to meet like-minded community members. Sid Jacobson JCC, as  lead agency for Engage Jewish Service Corps on Long Island and Queens, collaborates with Marion & Aaron Gural JCC, Mid-Island Y JCC, Friedberg JCC and Samuel Field Y. If you would like to join Engage Jewish Service Corps for volunteer and community building opportunities at Sid Jacobson JCC and/or in the local community, please fill out our online application here.


Coffee + Conversation is time set aside for members of the Engage volunteer program – boomers and beyond – to meet and develop deep, meaningful bonds with like-minded members of the community while sharing volunteer experiences. At Sid Jacobson JCC Thursday, November 15, 11am Thursday, December 20, 11am Thursday, January 17, 11am


Join us as we honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s legacy and make it a ‘day on’ rather than a day off. We will be assembling healthy and individually wrapped meals for those in need. Advance registration required. Monday, January 21 10am: Volunteer registration and breakfast 11am-1pm: Food packaging Register

Looking for more information about our volunteer programs?

Susan Berman, Director of Community Engagement, 516-484-1545 ext. 202,

Linda Samet, Supervisor of Volunteer Services516-484-1545 ext. 149,

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