UJA-Federation of New York is supporting Jewish Social Action Month (JSAM), which transforms the Jewish month of Cheshvan, a month without Jewish holidays, into a global month celebrating volunteerism and community building. JSAM takes place from October 14 through November 17.

UJA-Federation’s support for JSAM helps people from different backgrounds work together in community-based social action projects that aim to make life better for thousands of individuals and families. In 2012, 34 community service projects throughout New York City, Long Island, and Westchester, each including a strong Jewish education component, a volunteer opportunity, and collaboration among multiple community groups, will be offered for those who wish to participate.

“Through Jewish Social Action Month, we are helping to bridge the gap between people of diverse social and geographical backgrounds who might not have otherwise come together for a single cause,” said Neil Steinberg, JSAM’s chair. “We wish to not only have an impact on those who will benefit from the various JSAM activities, but also on those who volunteer their time. The new and strengthened connections between the communities collaborating on these programs will encourage deeper working relationships, strengthen our ability to help people in need, and highlight the core Jewish value of creating a better world.”

The 34 grants, distributed through UJA-Federation’s Commission on the Jewish People, fund projects at community centers, Hillels, human-service agencies, synagogues, and day schools. People from various backgrounds are brought together to volunteer in a wide range of projects. On Long Island, the North Shore Jewish Center will host an anti-bullying workshop for volunteers. Bullying continues to be a serious problem among youth, and during this event participants will learn, through conversation and demonstration, how to overcome inaction when they see something critical occurring.

For more information about JSAM, visit www.ujafedny.org/jewish-social-

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