Or Ami Center for Tikkun Olam (social action)

Nurturing Jewish Social Justice Activists

Involve yourself in our many Tikkun Olam, social justice projects.


At Or Ami, “we travel together down Jewish paths which inspire our hearts and souls, and transform us to seek justice and nurture compassion in the world.” Too often, the pressures of daily life combine with compassion fatigue and provide an easy excuse for Jews to focus on spiritual matters without investing themselves in social justice mitzvah work. Too often, young social justice activists are stymied in their attempts to find suitable mitzvah projects that accept volunteers under 16 years old. Too often, mitzvah volunteers are not taught the Jewish values which underlie their work; consequently, the “warm fuzzies” of a mitzvah project may not provide motivation for continued commitment to Tikkun Olam (social action) work.

Our Or Ami Center for Tikkun Olam will repair the world by integrating a full calendar of social action projects, with education about Jewish values and social justice activism for our kindergarten through high school students. It creates successive generations of Jews experienced with, committed to, and skilled at repairing the world.

Initial endeavors include:

  • Engaging a B’nai Mitzvah Project Coordinator (congregant Debby Pattiz, dpattiz@sbcglobal.net) to guide students toward deeper involvement
  • Creating VolunTEENS, Future Coaches, and Madrichim, three Tracks for Temple Teens (Triple T), to provide 7th-12th grade students with social action project planning and youth mentoring experiences
  • Holding Mitzvah Project Fairs in which post-B’nai Mitzvah students present their projects to younger students
  • Hosting a NFTY SoCal's Social Justice Kallah for 210 teens
  • Developing a social justice values curriculum to be implemented within all learning programs
  • Creating a list of organizations which will allow younger students to volunteer. 

Thanks to the generous donations of so many congregants and foundations, Or Ami deepens our compassionate congregation to meet the needs of our increasingly broken world. 

Life Long Learning


At Or Ami, we value Life-long Learning (Talmud Torah): From birth through burial, we grapple together with Jewish texts, traditions and mitzvot to illuminate our lives and touch our souls. We create ongoing and single session opportunities for congregants to engage in a journey of learning and spiritual growth. Members of all ages are challenged to think, question and contribute creatively to our common journey.

Our engaging learning offerings include:

Adult Learning 

Center for Jewish Parenting: Nurturing parents who know how to raise ethical, decent Jewish kids

Religious School options for Kindergarten through 6th grades (choose one):

Kesher: Once a week learning, drop off model

Mishpacha: Twice monthly family (student and parent) learning

Hebrew Tutoring Program: Small group tutoring for all 4th-6th grade students

Triple T: Tracks for Temple Teens: Multiple options for 7th-12th grade students

Bar/Bat Mitzvah

Center for Tikkun Olam: Nurturing the next generation of social justice activists



Bar/Bat Mitzvah Toolbox

Blessing the Torah (for your Aliyah)Torah Blessings (in Hebrew, English and transliteration)

Listen to the blessings and practice:

Before (slow), Before (normal speed), After (slow), After (normal speed)

Watch how the blessings are done (YouTube video)

Mitzvah Project Planning Tools:

Introduction to the MP process
Mitzvah Project Planning Guide 
Mitzvah Project Resources
Mitzvah Project Share Form

Questions? Contact Project Coordinator Cathy Rutkin

Bar/Bat Mitzvah Handbook: 

Everything you need to know
Tikkun Olam (Social Justice)