A Message from Tikkun Olam President Susan Kaufman to the Thanksgiving Dinner Volunteers

Thank you to all of the amazing volunteers who gave their time on the Sunday before Thanksgiving for Tikkun Olam’s annual dinner. I would like to express my extreme gratitude to the Thanksgiving Committee: Debbie Halperin, Rebecca Weisberg, Lori Villi, Shelly Katz and Marlene Yokel, who worked tirelessly and committed countless hours to make this …

Together in Strength and Hope: Reflections on the March for Israel Rally

November 15, 2023 Yesterday marked a historic day for our community and the entire Jewish people. Nearly 300,000 of us gathered at the National Mall in Washington, D.C., for the March for Israel rally, surpassing the record set by the March for Soviet Jewry in 1987. Temple Emanu-El is proud to have played our part …

Thank You to our Tikkun Olam Volunteers

Tikkun Olam volunteers came together on October 19 to assemble 300 toiletry kits filled with 12 essential items for vulnerable populations across New York City. Our support to The Urban Outreach Center helps those facing food and housing insecurity have access to crucial items such as hygiene kits and other basic resources.

The Urban Outreach Center is an Upper Manhattan-based nonprofit with a vision to end the hunger gap in East Harlem and the Upper East Side. Working to ensure access to all types of material necessities beyond those found at many food pantries, The Urban Outreach Center provides healthy foods, personal hygiene items, clothing, and social services. The Urban Outreach Center helps more than 65,000 New Yorkers per year to find food, social services support, and many other critical necessities.

We would like to express our gratitude to our volunteers Jodi Weisel, Eileen Melniker, Susan Warren, Judith West, Miriam Reines, Rena Goldstein, Phyllis Brodsky, Roz Pretzfelder, Pete Webb, Mark Heutlinger and Eileen Ames. Their commitment to helping those less fortunate is a true Mitzvah.

Learn how you can get involved with Tikkun Olam at Temple Emanu-El.

Thank You to our Emergency Supply Drive for Israel Volunteers

Thank you to all of our volunteers who contributed their time and energy to a worthwhile mitzvah for the Emergency Supply Drive for Israel. We received hundreds of packages and had 35 volunteers from the Temple Emanu-El Nursery School Mitzvah Committee and Tikkun Olam Committee join us to pack 50 large duffle bags to be sent to Israel’s front lines and hospitals. The critical efforts were featured on CBS and included on Fox and NY1 in stories about the conflict in Israel.

During the five-day drive in which people could either drop off supplies in the temple’s lobbies or make purchases from an Amazon wish list, thousands of the requested items were donated, including more than 200 tourniquets, 350 QuickClot, 500 combat wound dressings, 300 vent chest seals, 200 pulse oximeters and more.

Through our members’ incredible support, Temple Emanu-El has:

  • Sponsored an ambulance for Magen David Adom, Israel’s national medical emergency services agency.
  • Provided vital funding to Barzilai Medical Center in Ashkelon, which suffered significant damage last week due to rocket fire from Gaza and is on the front lines of treating injured survivors.
  • Collected over 2,100+ first aid items for IDF units and 400+ packages of baby formula for hospitals through our Emergency Supply Drive.

In the face of conflict, our community embodies the ethos of shared responsibility, binding individuals together in a tapestry of empathy and compassion. Whether offering assistance to the affected families or lending a listening ear to those in distress, the power of communal unity remains a beacon of light in the darkest of hours.

Thank You to our Tikkun Olam Mitzvah Project Volunteers

Tikkun Olam volunteers came together on August 8 to assemble 240 backpacks filled with 21 essential items for students from The Children’s Village in time for the start of school.  Our support helps vulnerable children and teens in NYC on their journey towards well-being, belonging and independence.

The Children’s Village was founded in 1851, and today, their mission remains very much the same: they work in partnership with families to help society’s most vulnerable children so that they become educationally proficient, economically productive, and socially responsible members of their communities. They believe that there are three keys to a child’s success: education, work, and lifelong relationships and they help children develop and nurture life-long relationships with family, friends, and mentors.

We would like to express our gratitude to Eileen Melniker, Susan Alexander, Roz Pretzfelder, Marilyn Ezzes, Jodi Weisel, Phyllis Brodsky, Susanne Fischer, Barbara Fox, Diane Bialick and Tess Tarantino who volunteered for many hours to complete this very meaningful Mitzvah. Without their continued commitment to helping those in need we would not have been able to provide these essential supplies for students.

Learn how you can get involved with Tikkun Olam at Temple Emanu-El.

Children’s Village Thanks Emanu-El Tikkun Olam

Temple Emanu-El’s Tikkun Olam Committee received a wonderful thank you email from Children’s Village Inwood House Director Valerie Worthy for the temple’s Project Prom donations.


Words cannot explain the “GRATITUDE” we are sending from the Inwood House Residential and School Base Programs.  The in-kind “Project Prom” donations we received from the entire Development Team allowed us to be a dynamic support to young adults in Foster Care, Domestic Violence Shelters and low-income housing, who could not afford to buy prom dresses or shoes this year.

It was such a rewarding experience to support these young adults, and we could not have done any of this without all of you and the generosity of the donors.

Please send them a huge “Thank You!”

Thank you all once again and have a wonderful day.

Valerie Worthy
Director, Children’s Village Inwood House

Kudos to the Tikkun Olam Committee, Project Prom volunteers, all of our donors and our corporate partners!

Learn how you can get involved with Tikkun Olam at Temple Emanu-El.

A Big Thank You to Our 2023 Project Prom Team and Partners

by Susan Kaufman
Chair, Tikkun Olam Committee

A huge thanks to the more than 80 volunteers who helped assist over 360 young women to prepare for their senior proms! We could not hold this event without your continued support and guidance. The room was filled with laughter, smiles and lots of giggles! The event was also covered by the media:

All our shoppers were able to leave the Temple with a NEW Prom Dress, NEW Shoes, NEW Evening Bag, NEW Jewelry and a Full Makeup bag! And snacks were even provided to all the shoppers! A huge thank you to all our partners who are so generous in donating all these wonderful items; this mitzvah would not be possible without the support:

  • Dress donations: Levy Group, Bari Jay, Adrianna Papell Group, Faviana, CamiNYC, Mori Lee, Adriennes Bridal, AMSALE, DELFICOLLECTIVE, AMANDA UPRICHARD, Alex Evenings, Mon Cheri Bridals, JOVANI and The Dessy Group
  • Shoe donations: Marc Fisher Shoes, Nina Footwear Corp., Caleres ,Dessy Steve Madden
  • Evening bag donations: EKR Designs LLC EMM KUO, Basha Accessories, Estee & Lily, La Regale, Kayu Designand Steve Madden
  • Jewelry donations: EVP
  • Makeup donations: Megababe, Amanda Smeal, Bluemercury and Estee Lauder Companies

I would also like to thank the Project Prom Committee, Debbie Halperin, Marlene Yokel, Abby Solomon, Dana Covey, Eileen Melniker, Lori Vili,  Rena Goldstein and Annette Marom who worked tirelessly throughout the year to schedule all our participating schools and solicit the many donations to make this event a huge success.

Most importantly I can not say enough about our Temple’s Maintenance staff.  Without their continued support and guidance by Jesus Toribo this event would not be able to take place.  They are always there to assist in every way imaginable. I would also like to express my extreme appreciation to Mark Heutlinger, John O’Hara and Joseph Palusevic who are available in a moment’s notice when assistance is needed.

With So Much Gratitude to All,

Susan Kaufman
Chair, Tikkun Olam Committee