Get Involved Locally

Temple Emanu-El places a high value on the Jewish concept of tikkun olam, or repairing the world, and offers congregants and their families a variety of opportunities to get involved and do for others.

Volunteering with one of our many service projects is a huge piece of our social justice work at Temple Emanu-El. Our Service Projects Committee oversees all of our partner organizations, and is responsible for examining the effectiveness and viability of our service projects, identifying organizational partners, developing lay leadership for Temple projects, and helping to recruit Temple volunteers.


Our partnerships with local organizations make it easy to find volunteer opportunities, but we also offer ways you can participate at Temple and at home.

Whatever environment is most comfortable for you, and however much time you have to give, there’s a way you can do a little something to help make this world a better place.



To volunteer or donate new or gently used household items, please contact Nancy Lubar. The list of donation items needed can be found here.


Attitudes & Attire helps women rediscover their value and self worth, plants the seeds for personal growth, and offers hope and a new direction toward self-sufficiency. The organization provides workshops on self-esteem and interview skills, supplies each woman with a new outfit and accessories from their boutique, and offers dental assistance. Volunteers will help women build their self-esteem and choose a business suit outfit to wear to job interviews. For more information or to volunteer, please contact Erica Strauss.


For over 30 years, Austin Street Center has specialized in caring for the most vulnerable unhoused men and women in Dallas. Beyond meeting basic needs, Austin Street is committed to individualized care for each person who comes for help. To learn more and get involved through Temple, contact Erica Strauss.


Temple members serve approximately 800 dinners to unhoused men and women at The Bridge, Dallas’ homeless center, on the first, fourth and fifth Sunday evenings of each month. Jobs range from serving food, preparing trays, taking trays to tables, and serving water. They also love to have musical accompaniment to dinners! To sign up, please contact Doug Davidson.


Dallas Furniture Bank (DFB) is the only agency in Dallas, Collin, and Denton counties with a mission to provide basic household furnishings to families transitioning out of homelessness, escaping homes in crisis, fleeing natural disasters or to others in need of furniture assistance. If you are interested in helping or donating, please reach out to Erica Strauss.


DME Dallas collects, refurbishes, sanitizes and distributes used durable medical equipment (DME) to residents of Dallas County who cannot afford to purchase or rent it. This provides relief of pain and suffering for people with acute injury or illness to improve their independence, self-sufficiency, and mobility. For more information, to donate items or to volunteer, please contact Stan Pomarantz.


Family Gateway provides comprehensive services and activities for homeless families including food and shelter, job training, search and placement assistance, temporary and transitional living facilities, life skills classes, children’s programming and community transition services. They are in need of specific items for their families, as well as tutoring and meal preparation for breakfast, lunch and dinner every day of the week. For more information, please contact Mika Manaster.


Heart House is a free after-school program that provides a safe haven and academic support to at-risk children, while encouraging them to become good citizens. To volunteer, please contact Erica Strauss.


The International Rescue Committee (IRC) responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises and helps people to survive and rebuild their lives. At work today in over 40 countries and 22 U.S. cities, we restore safety, dignity and hope to millions who are uprooted and struggling to endure. Currently, Temple is working with IRC’s New Roots initiative to help refugee families grow their own produce in community gardens across DFW. Temple is home to two IRC families. For more information about IRC’s New Roots program, contact Sarith Abramowitz.


JFS provides professional, effective and affordable mental health and social services that promote lifelong self-sufficiency and well-being for anyone in need. Services are provided for people of all ages, regardless of their ethnicity, religion, or ability to pay. Services include career and employment, children and teens, family violence, emergency assistance, elderly and disabled, volunteer services, and much more. If you are interested in getting involved, please contact Weezie Margolis.


Jill Stone was a Temple member who began working in the neighborhood in the early 1990s and quickly recruited other Temple members to join in her efforts. After her death in 2004, this elementary school was renamed in her memory. To volunteer, please contact Adam Lampert.


The mission of Literacy Achieves is to equip non-English speaking adults and their young children with English literacy and life skills to promote self-sufficiency and the overall well-being of our students, their families and the greater community. To volunteer, please contact Myra Fischel.


MoW provides nutritious, hot, home-delivered meals to those who are unable to provide proper meals for themselves due to illness, advanced age, or disability. Routes are available around Temple Emanu-El, in addition to other areas throughout the community. This is a great, flexible project for people of all ages: families with young children, teens needing community service hours, bar/bat mitzvah projects, etc. If you are interested in volunteering for this meaningful program, please contact Rick Rosenberg.


Providing $3 million in assistance to 67,000 economically disadvantaged North Dallas adults and children annually, NDSM is staffed 99.5 percent by volunteers. Opportunities for volunteers include food pantry and clothes closet workers, data entry personnel, ESL teachers, job counselors, tax preparers, client interviewers and receptionists. Needed medical clinic volunteers include doctors, dentists, nurses, and ancillary medical personnel. To volunteer at NDSM, please contact Sally Rosenberg.


North Texas Food Bank is a Dallas non-profit hunger relief organization that distributes donated, purchased and prepared foods through a network of more than 250 Partner Agencies in 13 counties. As a member of Feeding America, we support the nutritional needs of children, families and seniors through education, advocacy and strategic partnerships. To sign up, please contact Erica Strauss.


PediPlace is a nonprofit pediatric healthcare practice for children from birth through age 19 who are uninsured. We provide a medical home for children that tend to be from low-income families who otherwise would go without care or who would unnecessarily use the emergency room. Create newborn gift bags, help decorate the waiting area or patient rooms, read or play with the children who are waiting, or collect and sort gifts that each child receives. To learn more or to volunteer, please contact Erica Strauss.


The Vickery Meadow neighborhood – located only three miles from our temple – consists primarily of multi-family communities and contains one of the largest concentrations of economically disadvantaged residents in Dallas. Today the area is a major refugee resettlement location with rising populations from Myanmar, Iran, Iraq and parts of Africa. As a congregation, Temple Emanu-El has a long history of service in Vickery Meadow. If you would like more information about the Vickery Meadow neighborhood, please contact Cheryl Pollman, Chair of the Vickery Meadow Committee. To volunteer at the Vickery Meadow Food Pantry, please contact Carol Weinstein.


For 25 years, Vogel Alcove has provided free quality child development services for Dallas’ youngest victims of poverty: homeless children 6 weeks to age 5. Volunteer opportunities include storytime in the classroom, birthday angels, donating clothing, diapers, car seats, sharing a special talent such as musicians, puppet shows, working in the warehouse (sorting, folding, organizing donated items), and a grandparent program. To get involved please contact Marty Mintz.



The Jill Stone Community Garden enables us to better fulfill the mitzvah of feeding the hungry. It’s a great way to connect with other people, whether you are a beginner or an advanced gardener. It’s the place where meeting new friends, love of gardening, taking care of the environment and repairing the world all come together. To learn more, visit Temple Emanu-El on any Sunday or Wednesday morning. We need your help, your energy, and your passion as we continue growing healthy, fresh, sustainable food for our neighbors in Vickery Meadow. To help sustain the Jill Stone Community Garden, or for general questions, please contact Deidra Cizon or Wendy Leanse. Please click here to visit our Facebook page!


Family Gateway, one of Temple’s social justice partners, is an organization that provides support to families with children experiencing homelessness. Choose from any or all projects listed below.

  • Sanitation Kits: Assemble masks, hand sanitizer, and disinfecting wipes in a Ziploc bag.
  • Snack Bags: Assemble snack bags with non-perishable items in a brown paper bag. Click here for instructions.
  • Laundry Pods: Assemble laundry detergent pod kits by separating them into Ziploc bags with four pods in each bag.
  • Amazon Wish List: Purchase needed items from the organization’s Amazon wish list.


If you would like more information about ways to get involved locally through social justice, contact:

Sally Rosenberg, Chair of Service Projects Committee, or

Erica Strauss, Director of Social Justice and Special Projects,

Is your organization interested in becoming a Service Projects Partner at Temple Emanu-El? Please email: Erica Strauss for our Partnership Request Form.