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Deuteronomy 15:11 "For there will never cease to be needy ones in your land, which is why I command you - open your hand to the poor and needy kinsman in your land."

social action

The mission of our Social Action Committee is to energize and involve the members and friends of Shomrei Torah Synagogue to improve the lives of people in our local communities, in Israel, and across the world.

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To help families in Los Angeles who have struggled with poverty and homelessness, STS members since 2016 have served as volunteers at housing sites in the San Fernando Valley operated by the nonprofit organization Los Angeles Family Housing.

The support from our STS volunteer group includes reading to, and providing homework help for, children living at LAFH's housing sites. Our volunteers have also organized games and provided other entertainment for these youngsters, who often crave companionship and a break from the difficulties in their lives. In addition, we have served meals on holidays and other special occasions at LAFH's main facility in North Hollywood. STS members also have donated clothing, school supplies, books, and other badly needed items. 

Yet the needs are still great, and there are many rewarding and meaningful ways you can help. There is a particularly strong need for homework helpers and story readers at the LAFH Northridge site, as well as for volunteers to serve meals at the LAFH North Hollywood site.

For more, information, please contact:
Zygi Boxer at
Carol Levin at



Project Open Hands is STS's local service events and collections initiative. We partner with LA-based nonprofit organizations to help strengthen our city. Some of our activities have included:

--Organizing Mitzvah Day, a synagogue-wide event devoted to social action.
--Participating in beach cleanups and other activities with the environmental groups Heal the Bay and TreePeople.
--Collecting items for Baby2Baby, a charity providing basic necessities for children ranging from newborns to 12-year-olds who are living in poverty.
--Sorting food for SOVA, an organization providing free groceries and services to the hungry.
--Preparing casseroles, making sandwiches, serving meals, and packing toiletry kits for the homeless.
--Preparing welcome baskets for formerly homeless families moving into new housing.
--MLK Day clothing collection and distribution, along with other collection drives including children's books, clothing, shoes and toys.
--Monthly Peanut Butter & Jelly Sack Lunches For The Unhoused
--Shoes That Fit, providing shoes for children in select elementary schools

To get involved or to learn more, please contact Carol Levin at



STS has a proud history of supporting literacy efforts, and that tradition continues today. For years the synagogue provided one of the largest groups of volunteers in the city to Koreh LA, a childhood literacy program that was run by the Jewish Federation. When Koreh LA was shut down by the Federation for budget reasons in 2017, the STS social action committee decided to keep our volunteers' important work going by creating our own Shomrei Torah Literacy Project.

More than a dozen volunteers are involved in this initiative. Many work one-on-one with LAUSD students from nearby elementary schools who are struggling with their reading. Others read to groups of students or help classroom teachers. Still other volunteers, in coordination with the Los Angeles Public Library's adult literacy program, provide one-on-one instruction or teach classes for foreign-born adults who want to improve their English.

We are always looking for more volunteers for this important and rewarding work. For more information, please contact:

Stu Silverstein,
Ruth Huberman, 


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In times of joy as well as in times of sorrow, STS has a group of volunteers who are there for you: the Community of Caring. We provide gift baskets made with love for families with new babies and for individuals who are ill, while also providing support for the bereaved during the first year after their loss.

If you know of a congregant who needs this support, or if you are experiencing one of these moments yourself, please call the STS Main Office at 818-854-7650. In addition, you can contact Ellen Brennglass at or 818-571-9663. Ellen also is the person to reach if you would like to volunteer for the Community of Caring.



When you suffer the loss of a loved one, the Bereavement Committee provides guidance and support for mourning, in keeping with Jewish tradition. Our volunteers will help with arrangements at your home while you attend the funeral, and make sure you have Shiva Minyan leaders, prayer books and kippot for the mourners.

Please call the Main Office at 818-854-7650 upon the loss of a loved one. STS’s clergy and our committee will be notified. If you would like to serve on the Committee, please contact Paul Einsiedler at or 818-710-9222.



Our Bikkur Cholim Committee members visit congregants who are ill or injured. We also provide food and transportation, say the misheberach, and offer other comfort that a family or individual might need during this difficult time.

Please call the Main Office at 818-854-7650 if you are in need of these services and your request will be relayed to our committee.

Would you like to join us in helping those in our community who are suffering? We need volunteers to visit patients as well as to cook and deliver meals. If you would like to help out, please let us know.



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Shomrei Torah Synagogue
7353 Valley Circle Boulevard
West Hills, CA 91304
Main Office:
(818) 854-7650
Education Center:
(818) 854-7690



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