Community program

Temple Har Shalom community program celebrates its first anniversary

Members of Temple Har Shalom display beaded bracelets they have made for women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer and who attend retreats organized by Image Reborn. Bracelet making is one of the other service projects synagogue members participate in as part of the Community Partner of the Month program.
Photo by Marcy Abelow

Temple Har Shalom helps the Park City Christian Center mission meet people where they need it.

Throughout March, the Jewish Synagogue collected a range of hygiene products, including new toothbrushes, toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, diapers and feminine products, in addition household cleaning products, which will be packaged in kits during a service session. on Sunday. The public can drop off items until Friday at Temple Har Shalom, 3700 North Brookside Court. The project is part of the Community Partner of the Month for the Temple Har Shalom Social Action Committee, a program that started a year ago that seeks to build bridges in a time of division, said Harriet Berg, member of the Board of Directors, who co-chairs the program with Jerry Stouck.

“We started the program with the intent not only to provide our temple members with information about the services and programs of these organizations in the community,” she said.

“We also wanted to give our members the opportunity to volunteer for these organizations.

There are so many wonderful organizations that we are delighted to introduce ourselves. »

Stouck is amazed at the number of nonprofit organizations that call Park City home.

“We have a wealth, a large number of non-profit organizations that all serve the community,” he said. “I learned a lot about these organizations myself after taking this job, and I think that interest is not limited to people my age who are retired and have the time, interest and energy needed to contribute to these organizations. I think younger families with children can also do it. And there is no shortage of organizations to present.

The first three community organizations Temple Har Shalom partnered with were Peace House, Summit County Clubhouse, and Swaner Preserve and EcoCenter.

Peace House is on a mission to eliminate domestic violence in Summit and Wasatch counties, while Summit County Clubhouse is a nonprofit mental wellness organization, Stouck said.

The Swaner Preserve and EcoCenter is a nonprofit environmental organization, he said.

“We had a dozen or a dozen and a half Temple members and their children in the storeroom pulling weeds last spring on a Sunday afternoon,” Stouck said.

Other nonprofits that have benefited from Temple Har Shalom’s program include Habitat for Humanity of Summit and Wasatch Counties, he said.

“We worked on a house they were building near Promontory last fall,” Stouck said. “We had the opportunity to work with students who were studying carpentry.

Deciding which nonprofits to work with is a pleasant task, Berg said.

“Every month is different, depending on which organization we want to highlight,” she said. “We call them and ask them what they need from us. Do they need us to do a food drive? Do they need us to collect hygiene items? »

Last month, the nonprofit partner was Image Reborn, an organization founded by plastic surgeon Dr. Renaldo Saltz.

“Dr. Saltz and the organization do retreats for women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer,” Berg said. “They do over 20 a year, and during COVID they did them virtually. But now they do it in a hybrid way in person and online.”

Community Partner of the Month volunteers have helped with two programs for Image Reborn, according to Berg.

“They rely on volunteers to bring the meals to these women’s homes, which we did, and they were also looking for a small token that they could give to these women as a welcome gift,” he said. she stated. “So the women of Har Shalom stepped up and made bracelets for all the women who would attend the retreats throughout the year.”

At the start of the program, Berg and the committee selected nonprofits to coincide with national events or the season that would work best.

“For example, when we did Peace House last year, we did it during Domestic Violence Awareness Month,” she said. “Of course, it wouldn’t make sense to highlight the Swaner Reserve and the EcoCenter in the dead of winter if they needed us to do some weeding.”

Sometimes the nonprofit will contact Berg or Stouck.

“Next month we will be working with the People’s Health Clinic, and it happened that someone who sits on their board and who is our congregation has spread the word to see if we would be interested,” he said. he declares. “Coincidentally, we were already planning to contact them.”

As for the Park City Christian Center, Berg called executive director Rob Harter and told him about the Partner of the Month program.

“I asked him what he needed and he told us he needed hygiene products,” she said.

During each service project, Temple Har Shalom creates a video recording of the event and posts it to the synagogue’s YouTube channel.

“We meet via Zoom where the directors of the organizations give a presentation which provides a Q&A opportunity,” Stouck said. “We are posting these presentations online so that people who may not have been able to attend can go watch them.”

Berg said she was happy to see how quickly the Community Partner of the Month program has spread.

“It was such a wonderful and heartwarming program,” she said. “The organizations are so grateful that we want to continue working with them and helping them.”