Our community prospers with the
strength, energy, and commitment of its members.
Here is information about some activities, committees which
might spark ideas and get you involved.
ABUNDANCE FARM COMMITTE: Come and work in our own organic garden which is vitally connected to our educational programs and holidays. All ages help reap and sow. Our produce is shared with The Survival Center, our neighbor next door.
Rabbi Jacob Fine, Director
ALMA, the Religious School: (ALMA is Aramaic for “world”). A different kind of religious school for kindergarteners through 7th grade. Its focus is on socially engaged Judaism and emphasizes community building and parent participation. Philosophy focuses on learning through doing and hence utilizes a wide diversity of techniques such as music, cooking, gardening, movement and theatre. These innovative programs bring Torah to life through engagement with the world.
Rabbi Jacob Fine
CBI Director of Jewish Life
BIKKUR HOLIM: Follow the Jewish tradition of providing comfort and support to those who are locally hospitalized at Cooley Dickinson Hospital, or in need of special help and meals.
CHESED: Helping others in our community- the elderly, those who have suffered a loss, those suffering from illness.
CBI CAFE: Come by on a Sunday morning to our CBI Cafe where you can enjoy a warm welcome, good coffee and pastries. Schmooze with friends, or read the Sunday newspapers. OR, take a class with Rabbi David, listen to a guest speaker, or participate in a workshop. The Adult Education Committee is always looking for volunteers to be guest speakers, assist with the planning, or help with the arrangements (refreshments, setup, cleanup) on the day of each cafe.
CHEVRA KADISHA: Prepares deceased members for burial according to ancient, Jewish traditions. This is one of the greatest acts of kindness and is done out of respect for the deceased. Chevra Kadisha is ready to respond at a moment’s notice, and will travel to any of the funeral homes in our area.
EDUCATION: CBI’s Education Committee wants you!
Responsible for planning and oversight of the religious school and youth programs and supports and advises the Director of Jewish Life and Rabbi in their roles within these programs. We support the development and implementation of curricula and learning models that spark or rekindle a lifelong passion for Jewish learning. We prioritize the integration of the Jewish learning experience with all facets of CBI’s Vision.
ENDOWMENT MANAGEMENT: Responsible for the investment of CBI Endowment and maintaining documentation and records for review as directed by CBI Board
FINANCIAL OVERSIGHT: Develops CBI’s annual operating budgets for review and approval by Board and oversees financial health of the synagogue. Encourages members who have a basic understanding of financial statements and who understand sound financial, business decisions.
SUSTAINING: Plans auctions, parties in honor of a special member(s), tribute dinners, fun events for Purim, Hanukkah- all with the purpose of raising money to help balance the CBI budget. Other ways include High Holiday Appeal and selling of scrip to local food stores.
GOVERNANCE: Reviews the CBI By-Laws and recommends desirable changes, maintains a record of CBI ‘policies and procedures,’ and develops any necessary transition procedures concerning numbers and terms of Officers and at-Large Directors.
HOUSE & PROPERTIES/ AESTHETICS: Supervises the maintenance, repair, and improvement of CBI’s physical plant and grounds, its furnishings and equipment, excluding religious articles.
With aesthetics, perhaps you have an “eye” for color or other talents which may help in “sprucing up” the interior appearance of the synagogue.
ISRAEL COMMITTEE: How does our congregation address the current, critical situation in Israel? This forum of members with vastly different viewpoints and passions has strived to create a group ethos of respect. Members meet to discuss the history, as well as current events in Israel, sponsor speakers, and strive to develop an educational, active role, for ourselves and the congregation.
LANDSCAPE : Works to improve the aesthetics of the grounds around the CBI building and adjacent areas of backyard and Lander-Grinspoon Academy. This includes implementing ideas for new trees, shrubs, and flowers.
LIBRARY: Like books? Organizing and keeping books, newspapers up to date? CBI has a library system and welcomes anyone to come and browse. Suggestions for improvements welcome.
MEMBERSHIP: Have you felt comfortable in the ways you have been welcomed into our CBI community? This committee’s role is to make new members feel warmly welcomed and included in our programs. Focuses on outreach and ways of attracting new members.
NORTHAMPTON COT SHELTER: A group of volunteers committed to preparing and serving dinner to guests at the Northampton Cot Shelter on the fourth Wednesday of each month from November through April.
Peggy J Besht
PERSONNEL: Creates and implements policies with respect to CBI employees; handles regular reviews of staff, and is a conduit between community and staff.
TIKKUN OLAM: The Tikkun Olam Committee is dedicated to making social justice a centerpiece of the CBI community. We advocate from the street to the State House with a Jewish voice and partnerwith those of other faiths to press for compassion, fairness, and a sustainable world. We also donate funds on behalf of the congregation to organizations that help those in need.
VALLEY JEWISH SENIORS: Here’s an opportunity threefold: schmooze with good folks, have a wonderful, nutritious meal, and then hear an interesting speaker. The group meets the third Wednesday of the month at 12:30 in the CBI library.