Keeping the health and well-being of our entire community in mind, we are suspending on-site operations until further notice.
Our staff will hold regular weekday hours, working remotely, from 9:00am-5:00pm.

Mitzvah Day 2020

Celebrate Mitzvah Day Year Round!

Together-apart, we can still do our part to repair the world (tikkun olam), even from the safety and comfort of our homes. This page is your resource for projects you can participate in any day of the year.

Remember to take lots of photos and videos to share with your #TBECLT family! Use these hashtags when you post on social media:
#TBECLT, #TBEMitzvahDay, #MitzvahAtHome, #TBECares, and #TBEActs.

Questions about projects? Please contact Karen Greenblatt.


In addition to participating in this year’s Mitzvah Day projects at home, we invite you to make a donation to one or more of the agencies we partner with annually.

Donate to our partner agencies

Click any project name below for full description and supplies needed.

Thank You Cards, Drawings, Posters, and Signs

Let’s thank and celebrate those people in our community who are sustaining us during this difficult pandemic: Doctors and nurses, teachers, grocery store employees, delivery drivers, hospital staff, and many others who are essential to our community (not only now but always). Use whatever art supplies and materials you have on hand. Be creative and brighten someone’s day.

Supplies Needed

Art supplies, plus cards, paper, poster board, cardboard, wood scraps or any recyclables on hand

Delivery

Mail cards on your own, or if you are comfortable, deliver the posters/signs to a local hospital or store. You can also display signs at the front of your neighborhood or on your lawn. For TBERS teachers, please mail to Temple Beth El.

Letters to High School Seniors

Our TBE high school seniors are missing prom, graduation, college tours, and many important milestones during their last days at school. Write letters of encouragement to students to help them at this difficult time. Please register your interest in this project ahead of time by emailing Marissa Brooks so we can assign you a specific student (name, address, high school, college choice).

Supplies Needed

Email or paper/envelopes/stamps

Delivery

Congregants email or mail letters on their own directly to student’s address

Uplifting Messages and Videos

Create a video, photo or meme with a humorous or inspirational message to lift someone’s spirits during challenging times. Design music videos, song parodies, skits, words of encouragement, artwork, jokes, poems, driveway chalk designs and more! Take a photo or record your message and share it via social media.

Subscribe to JewTube Charlotte

Supplies Needed

Creative ideas, costumes, music, props, whatever you need – plus a cell phone camera and access to social media (or TBE’s facebook page).

Delivery

Post to your own social media accounts and email to Karen Greenblatt

Click here for a helpful list of video production ideas.

Freedom School Journals

Shalom Park Freedom School brings low-income CMS students to Shalom Park each summer for a six-week literacy-based camp. We will decorate notebooks to be used as journals for the scholars. The activity will be more fun for people who love to color and draw – and best for those age 12+ so that the notebooks will be beautiful and special for our scholars. Decorate a piece of white paper or card stock with dimensions 8.5″ by 7″ and mail it in a large envelope to Rachel Choffin, who will assemble the journals.

Supplies Needed

White paper (such as printer paper) or cardstock measuring 8.5″ x 7″ (portrait/vertical orientation for journal cover) and an assortment of Sharpie markers

Delivery

Mail decorated pages to Rachel Choffin c/o Temple Beth El (5101 Providence Road, Charlotte, NC 28226)

Community Organizing - Driver's License Restoration

Write letters (electronic via email or typed/handwritten via USPS), using our templates and guidelines, thanking area judges and district attorneys (contact list linked below) for waiving fines in support of TBE’s Drivers License Restoration Clinic (building relationships and encouraging future support). TBE is using the principles of community organizing to engage our congregation around a shared vision of achieving racial justice in Charlotte.

Supplies Needed

Email or paper/envelopes/stamps

Delivery

Congregants email or mail letters on their own to DA addresses (provided)

Click here for judge and DA contact information and letter templates.

Click here to see the WSOC-TV story about the clinic held in January.

Making Masks

Make protective masks needed by hospital staff, essential workers and your family membes during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Supplies Needed

Fabric to make 8-11″ circle, 1/4″ elastic (18″), Needle and thread, Scissors, Large safety pin, Iron

Delivery

Congregants distribute (mail or drop off) on their own.

Click here for a helpful YouTube tutorial.

Greeting Cards for Seniors

Bring cheer to individuals living in senior living communities who are quarantined to their rooms, with no communal dining, so they don’t need to dine “alone.” Operation Connect, launched by TBE congregants Harris Ader and Maggie Fogel, encourages organizations to adopt a community and send letters/cards that are delivered with a resident’s meal. Decorate cards, write letters, create poems, etc. using any paper and art materials you have at home.

Supplies Needed

Paper or card stock and art supplies of your choice – markers, crayons, colored pencils or watercolors

Delivery

Mail greeting cards to Maggie Fogel c/o Temple Beth El (5101 Providence Road, Charlotte, NC 28226). Cards will be forwarded to our “adopted” senior living facility, which has safety protocols in place for accepting mail/ packages.

Read more about Operation Connect.

JFS Food Pantry Needs

Help restock the JFS Food Pantry with non-perishables and household items. On Mitzvah Day, clean out your pantry, plan your shopping list for the next grocery store run, or schedule your next grocery delivery. Then mark your calendar for May 27 to drop off your JFS donations.

Supplies Needed

Non-perishable and household items for donation

Delivery

Drop off at Levine JCC main entrance on May 27 between 10am and 12pm. Social distancing and face mask required for drop off. Please note: If JFS reopens earlier, you may drop items directly at JFS.

Visit the JFS website for a list of most-desired items.

Heart Math Tutoring

Learn about Heart Math Tutoring, a math intervention program that recruits, trains, and supports volunteers as tutors in high-poverty elementary schools in Charlotte. Find out about the structured curriculum and the tutor’s role in increasing student confidence and enthusiasm towards learning. Hear testimonials from TBE members who are current volunteers (one hour per week).

Subscribe to JewTube Charlotte

Supplies Needed

None

Delivery

None

Click here to watch the informational video.

Read more about Heart Math Tutoring.

Neighborhood Trash Cleanup

Cleanup your own neighborhood or a nearby park/greenway! Take a family walk, and bring along trash bags (and protective and/or latex gloves) so you can cleanup along the way. Take a photo and weigh your collected trash!

Supplies Needed

Trash bags, gloves, scale

Delivery

None

Container Gardening with Shalom Green

Usually Mitzvah Day participants care for the Shalom Park Community Garden. This year, learn how to start your own container garden at home! You’ll get detailed instructions via video and then participate in a live Q&A session with master gardener, Bobbie Mabe. Open to all gardeners – novice to experienced. You may purchase your supplies beforehand, or just attend the info session and create your garden afterwards.

Subscribe to JewTube Charlotte

Supplies Needed

Container, soil, seeds/seedlings, fertilizer (plus gloves and tools) – See complete list for more details

Delivery

None

Click here to watch the instructional video.

Take the pledge to care for the environment: 2020 Shalom Green Pledge Card

Gift of Life Registry

The Gift of Life Registry is a public bone marrow and blood stem cell registry. Gift of Life facilitates transplants for children and adults suffering from life-threatening illnesses, including leukemia, lymphoma, other cancers and genetic diseases. Join our TBE “Donor Circle” and via a mail order kit, you can “get swabbed” to see if you are a match and can offer hope to a stranger. If you are age 35+, there is a $60 fee to join the registry. If you are under 35, your participation is free!

Subscribe to JewTube Charlotte

Supplies Needed

None

Delivery

Congregants mail their own swab kits to Gift of Life

Learn more at the Temple Beth El Donor Circle website.

Meals for TBE Congregants

Make individual meals that can be frozen (and brought to TBE when we reopen) to be distributed to ill or elderly congregants during the year. Please label all ingredients.

Supplies Needed

Meal recipe and ingredients

Delivery

Deliver meals to TBE once reopened (label ingredients)

Bedtime Stories

Attention 5th, 6th and 7th graders: Record yourselves reading your favorite bedtime stories for younger children. Send us your video, and we will post links for our younger children to access.

Subscribe to JewTube Charlotte

Supplies Needed

Storybook of your choice, cell phone or web camera

Delivery

Email videos to Karen Greenblatt

Click here for a helpful list of video production ideas.

Letters to Rising Kindergartners

Attention 3rd and 4th graders: Write letters or make cards for rising kindergarten students telling them about religious school and welcoming them to TBERS since we were not able to have kindergarten open house this year.

Subscribe to JewTube Charlotte

Supplies Needed

Paper and art supplies of your choice – markers, crayons, colored pencils

Delivery

Mail letters to Temple Beth El

Seed Bombs

Make seed bombs with flower seeds that would attract bees, and take a family walk to scatter the bombs in vacant/open areas.

Supplies Needed

1 cup potting soil (organic preferred), 1 cup all-purpose flour, 1 package of seeds – ex. wildflower, herb, flower, milkweed

Delivery

None

Click here for simple instructions.

Click here for detailed instructions, images, and tips on how to turn these into gifts!

Letter Writing Campaign on Social Justice Issues

Use the Religious Action Center (RAC) of Reform Judaism’s online form to tell members of Congress how you feel on important social justice issues. Learn about key issues, then enter your home address to view a template letter addressed to your representatives – it couldn’t be easier! Choose from suggested issues or find the topics most meaningful to you.

Subscribe to JewTube Charlotte

Supplies Needed

None

Delivery

None (all letters submitted using RAC form)

Click here for a list of resources on a variety of social justice issues.

Additional Project Ideas

  • Make up-cycled jump ropes from tee shirts to donate to family shelters: Click here for step-by-step instructions.
  • Purse with a purpose – Clean up unwanted/gently used purses and fill with hygiene and haircare products, sanitary supplies, bus fare, etc. to be donated to organizations like Dress for Success or women’s shelters.
  • Make Homeless Neighbor bags: Click here for a link to instructions.
  • Children can select two or three of their toys, clean them up and get them ready to be donated to family shelters. They can write a note to go with the toys.
  • Make bagged lunches for Urban Ministry Center’s Operation Sandwich: Click here for a list of instructions and what to include.
  • Take the environmental pledge for Shalom Green: Print and complete this pledge card, take a photo of yourself holding it, and post to social media.

Charlotte Organizations Need Your Help: Click here for a list of Charlotte agencies with volunteer opportunities.