Volunteer Opportunities

At Central Synagogue

Make Personal Connections through Central’s Congregant-to-Congregant Visiting Program.

This expanded initiative, which is overseen by Central’s Caring Committee, matches Central Synagogue members with those who may be home bound, recovering from illness, or simply interested in meeting new people. Participants meet on a monthly basis and connect in each other’s homes, over coffee or lunch, or a mutually enjoyable activity. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) to learn more about this program.

Volunteer for Dorot's Rosh HaShanah Package Delivery

Sunday, September 22, 10:00 am-12:00 pm, Community House

Bring warmth and companionship to an older neighbor. Sign up for orientation, package pick-up, and a home visit assignment.

Register »

Mentors Matter: Helping Under-served High School Seniors with Central Congregants

400 high school seniors and only 1 college advisor. That’s what these wonderful, talented students are facing just a couple blocks away from our synagogue, at the High School of Art & Design, an extraordinary, state-of-the-art middle school/high school for kids with artistic talents who major in architecture, painting, drawing, cartooning, film, fashion, graphic design, set design.

Alumni include Art Spiegelman, Calvin Klein, Tony Bennett, and artist Lorna Simpson.

Most of these kids are from immigrant families. Several are DACA Dreamers. Few of their parents have gone to college. Most have few resources and little-to-no parental support or college-literacy when it comes to applications — how to fill them out, apply for financial aid, think about a college essay, meet deadlines, etc.

Central Synagogue is now partnering with HSAD to fill the gap on mentorship for these seniors — committing to helping at least 2-3 classes next year. If you are a Central Synagogue member or on the waitlist, we hope you’ll considering being one of these mentors. Click here to learn what’s involved and read our FAQ.

If you have questions, would like to get involved, or know of someone in particular whom you think might be a good fit for this program, please contact us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Upcoming Opportunities

Breakfast Program

Thursdays & Fridays, 6:00-7:30am | Lese Lobby

The Breakfast Program, formerly known as the Caring Committee Feeding Program, is among Central Synagogue’s longest ongoing social justice projects. Originally conceived and implemented by longtime congregant Nat Shapiro in 1983, the Breakfast Program was started in response to Mayor Koch’s outcry for New York City’s religious institutions to respond to an exploding homeless and hungry problem. Today, many clients of the Breakfast Program are working poor who greatly appreciate and regularly rely on the warm, nutritious start to their day. Volunteers assemble every Thursday and Friday morning in Lese Lobby (Community House) to prepare and serve the most important meal of the day. A bag lunch is also handed out to clients. These lunches are prepared the prior evening as part of Central Synagogue’s Sandwich Making Program. Volunteers must be in the 6th grade or older; those under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult.

Sign up is required in advance to volunteer. For more information or to sign up, contact breakfast@censyn.org.

Why Knot Knit Mondays

Alternate Mondays, 10:00am-12:00pm | Community House

Monday mornings new and experienced knitters are busy creating beautiful pieces of clothing that are donated to New Yorkers in need. Extra hands are always welcome. Don’t know how to knit? This is also a great way to learn!

Contact knitting@censyn.org for more information.

Court Watch NYC for Faith Communities

Tuesday, October 29, 6:00 pm | Lindenbaum Pavilion

Become a Court Watcher.

Court Watch NYC is a collaborative project of three organizations – the Brooklyn Community Bail Fund, VOCAL-NY and 5 Boro Defenders – dedicated to criminal justice reform and prosecutorial accountability. Through this community-driven initiative, volunteers are trained to collect real-time data of what is actually happening in courtrooms and capture the narratives not reflected in official accounts.

Trained Court Watchers serve as the public’s eyes and ears in NYC courtrooms. Working in pairs, volunteers observe arraignments and record what they see and hear in court. Court Watch NYC reports their findings to the public, bringing transparency and accountability to our criminal justice system.

We hope you’ll join us in building this accountability movement.

Register »