Rabbinic Reflections

We Are Hiring: Seasonal Project Assistant

Seasonal Project Assistant, Independent Contractor Each year, we have a short window in between when our outgoing cohort of Jewish Service Corps Members leaves their communal living space and our new cohort begins in which to prepare our houses. In some cities, this...

We Are Hiring: Director of Finance and Administration

Director of Finance and Administration, full-time position Avodah’s Director of Finance and Administration stewards the financial health and strategy of the organization. They are responsible for the financial, investment, and risk management operations at Avodah. The...

Avodah at the White House by CEO Cheryl Cook

When I received the invitation to the White House Chanukah party, my first thought was of my ancestors and those of my spouse. How amazed these immigrants, who fled the towns of Eastern Europe and the Ottoman Empire, would be to know that not only was the White House...

Meet the Leadership for Social Change Facilitators

After a successful first year, the Avodah Institute for Social Change will present its second leadership development cohort for senior-level Jewish professionals: Leadership for Social Change, beginning in January. The program is facilitated by a set of diverse and...

Rallying for Reproductive Rights

Avodah D.C. Corps Members, alumni, staff, advisory council members, and allies rallied on Capitol Hill with our partners, National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW), last month to fight for reproductive freedom after it was leaked that the Supreme Court intends to...

Alumni Spotlight: Laura Landau’s Service Corps Social Experiment

Laura Landau (Chicago 2012-2013) grew up in Providence, RI, and attended Barnard College and the Jewish Theological Seminary, where she majored in Urban Studies and Jewish Art respectively. In her Avodah year, she served as the Wellness Coordinator at Friedman Place,...

Avodah’s Newly Formed Union Receives Voluntary Recognition

Avodah and its recently formed employee union jointly announced the formal recognition of the staff’s affiliation with the Washington-Baltimore News Guild on March 28, 2022. The staff were moved to form a union as an extension of Avodah’s mission and impact in the...

12 Avodah Artists & Creators to Support this Holiday Season

In an economy dominated by Amazon and big-box stores, we know small business owners and creators are facing an increasingly difficult battle for customers. This season, we encourage you to shop small. In addition to shopping at stores local to your area, we’d like to...

Alumni Spotlight: Hayley goes to Hungary

Avodah alum Hayley Rein (New York Service Corps, 2019-2020) has known for a while that she wanted to build a career helping people. Most recently, this aspiration has landed her in Eger, Hungary. Originally from Brooklyn, Hayley studied psychology and sociology at...

Placement Perspectives: Service Corps Member Turned Supervisor

Diana Levy Moldovan has been involved with Avodah in multiple capacities, with involvement spanning more than a decade. In 2007, she became the first Service Corps Member to be placed at the Urban Assembly School for Law and Justice (SLJ) — and she’s worked...

Pieces of a Puzzle: Mandy Peskin’s Avodah Journey

Mandy Peskin spent this year serving as a legal clinic coordinator at Bread for the City, as part of Avodah’s Jewish Service Corps. The organization focuses on eviction defense, family law for survivors of domestic abuse, and helping people access public benefits,...

Reclaiming Judaism: A Conversation with Temmi Merlis

In honor of Pride Month, we spoke with Temmi Merlis, an alum of Avodah’s Justice Fellowship and member of the LGBTQ community.  What’s your connection to Avodah? I was in the New York City Justice Fellowship in 2017-2018. It was great. I felt comfortable there. For...

Community Care: A Talk with Avodah Alum Emily Saltzman

While Avodah’s mission is focused on social justice through a Jewish lens, we are proud to say that our programs often help participants gain a deeper understanding of their own identities. One such program alum is Emily Saltzman (New York City Service Corps,...

Finding Community: Q&A with Avodah Alum Rakhel Silverman

In honor of Pride Month, we’re spotlighting queer Avodah alumni leaders like Rakhel Silverman. We sat down with them to discuss their experiences and work as a queer Jewish person. What was your year with Avodah like? I did the Service Corps in 2019-2020 and was...

Bamidbar 5781

By Rabbi Lauren Tuchman This week, we begin the fourth book of the Torah, Sefer Bamidbar. In Hebrew, bamidbar means wilderness or desert. In English, the title Numbers derives from the multiple censuses taken throughout the book. Bamidbar is a much more apt title for...

The Power of Relationships: Work as a Community Health Therapist

In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month, we spoke with Avodah Chicago Justice Fellowship alumna Molly Schneider on her experience as a mental health professional. For years, Molly Schneider (Avodah Justice Fellowship, 2018-2019) has spent her days listening to the...

A Moment of Accountability in the Police Killing of George Floyd

  Yesterday’s full conviction of Officer Derek Chauvin represents a collective exhale. A breath we have been holding as a nation for three weeks (and for many far longer) and a reminder of the breath George Floyd was denied as he cried out, “I can’t...

Connecting to Climate: Q&A with a Climate Justice Professional

Dahlia Rockowitz is an alumna of Avodah’s Service Corps program and climate justice advocate. Since completing the Service Corps in 2009, she has held multiple roles in the climate justice space, and recently became the Washington Director of Dayenu: A Jewish Call to...

Torah Teachings on Purity Rituals in the Time of COVID-19

By Rabbi Lauren Tuchman This week’s parsha, Tazria-Metsora is both incredibly timely and deeply complex. Now that the Kohenim have been ordained, their functions are beginning to be outlined. The Book of Leviticus is arguably the Torah’s most complex and...

From the desk of the CEO: One year of COVID-19

I write this note sitting at my dining room table in Brooklyn, NY, with my children attending school via video in the next room. It’s unbelievable that it’s been a year since the pandemic hit.  My last time on a plane was visiting our Chicago site last February. I sat...

Jewish Disability Awareness, Acceptance, and Inclusion Month

The following remarks were given by Rabbi Lauren Tuchman, Avodah’s Ruach Avodah Spiritual Advisor, on February 3, 2021/22 Shvat, 5781 at the #JDAM (Jewish Disability Awareness Month) kickoff, hosted by Jewish Federations of North America. I would like to begin...

A Snapshot of What’s Ahead for Avodah in 2021

Our mission at Avodah is to develop lifelong social justice leaders who inspire and strengthen the Jewish community’s work toward a more just and equitable world. While 2020 was filled with incredible challenges that required us all to make major adjustments, we still...

Statement on Today’s Insurrection at The U.S. Capitol

To our Avodah community: As of 5 p.m. ET, all Avodah D.C. Corps Members who were out of the Bayit providing essential services to clients across the District were home safely and adhering to the curfew ordered by the D.C. Mayor. We offered car ride services to Corps...