Chesed

The Torah teaches us that “All Jews are responsible for one another,” and the members who volunteer with the Chesed group take this teaching seriously.   For any member of our community in need, they are there. Whether in happy times, as with the birth of a child, or in the most difficult times of sickness and mourning, Chesed volunteers are there to support our community in any way they can. Three pillar programs are as follows:

  1. Cooking and delivering meals to families with newborns. If you are interested in cooking meals for families with new babies, please contact Jessica Bearak at [email protected].
  2. Shiva Committee: Making Shiva calls and setting up homes for Shiva. Click here for the Plan for the Shiva Committee.
  3. Visiting sick children at Lurie Children's Hospital and the Jewish elderly and The Self Help Home on a monthly basis.

Bikur Cholim

Have you or a loved one become ill and wanted to stay connected to the Anshe Emet community during this difficult time?

Would you or a loved one benefit from a visit by a community member?  

Anshe Emet, as part of an initiative within the greater Chicago Jewish community, has assembled a group of volunteers to perform Bikur Cholim (visiting the sick). The Bikur Cholim Team at Anshe Emet performs the mitzvah of visiting the sick for the connection and continued healing of those who have become ill or impaired. Volunteers do not need prior experience, but rather a desire to want to learn about the mitzvah of Bikur Cholim and to be an active participant in Bikur Cholim for the Anshe Emet community. Acts of Bikur Cholim may take on many forms, such as offering spiritual strength, guidance and companionship, and also simply sharing time together and swamping stories or watching a favorite television program. Training in the Jewish mitzvah of Bikur Cholim from Jewish texts to the hands on every day practice of visiting the sick is available.  

For more information about receiving a Bikur Cholim visit please contact Rabbi D’ror Chankin-Gould at [email protected]/773-868-5145. For more information to become a volunteer please contact one of the co-chairs, Julie Ann Sklaver or Hazzan Steven Berke at [email protected].

Lurie Children's Hospital Project

We are currently expanding the Chesed Committee's role with Lurie Children's Hospital.

Approximately three years ago Anshe Emet Chesed Committee was approached by Chai Lifeline to have two volunteers come to Children's Memorial and provide a craft activity for the children who are receiving treatment. Our members, Dara Hessell & Loretta Kaminsky have provided the leadership to organize other synagogue members to plan a monthly craft activity and engage the children. The young patients' time away from sickness and treatment is very rewarding for the volunteer.

Anshe Emet is now providing two volunteers each month and we have been asked to continue at the new Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital. We are looking for Anshe Emet members to join us on the third Thursday from 9:30am until noon.

An ongoing commitment is not required, and training will be provided. Please contact Dara Hessell at [email protected] if you are interested in this Chesed Committee project.

Project at Friedman Place

Friedman Place is an assisted lifestyle community for the blind and visually impaired adults and is currently at full occupancy with 83 residents. The residents range from age 20 - 90 with the mean being 60 years of age. The facility is managed by an amazing group of women. They have many wonderful volunteer opportunities and ways to get involved. Please feel free to read more about Friedman Place at http://friedmanplace.org/.

If you are interested in getting involved, please contact Beth Elman at [email protected]. To learn more, contact Anshe Emet member, Paulette Freed at [email protected]

Chesed Opportunities

Volunteer Opportunity  Volunteer Activity;
Time Commitment
Age Restrictions   Contact  
Bikur Cholim Visiting the sick; Involves being informed when there is a need and you may participate based upon your availability 18 and older Julie Ann Sklaver or Hazzan Steven Berke
at [email protected]
Chevra Kadisha 
Click here to learn more.

Lakeview Funeral Home
1458 W. Belmont
Chicago, IL 60657

Chicago Jewish Funerals
8851 Skokie Boulevard
Skokie, IL 60077
Service group comprised of men and women who perform the pre-burial preparations of a Jewish body; Involves being informed when there is a need and you may participate based upon your availability 18 and older Barry Gross at [email protected]/312-988-4010 or
Merle Gross at [email protected]/312-988-4010
Friedman Place  
5527 N. Maplewood
Chicago, IL 60625
Various opportunities; As often as you'd prefer Age 16 and older, unless accompanied by an adult Beth Elman at [email protected] 
Lurie Children's Hospital
225 E. Chicago Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611 
Art Project; 3rd Thursday of the month, from 9:30am - 12:00pm Age 16 and older Dara Hessell at [email protected]
New Baby Meals Cook a meal when a new baby is born; As often as you'd prefer N/A Jessica Bearak at [email protected]
Self Help Home  
908 W. Argyle St.
Chicago, IL 60640
Various opportunities; As often as you'd prefer All ages Paulette Freed at [email protected]
Shiva Committee   Help prepare homes for Shiva,
help serve food at Shiva, cook a
meal for the immediate family; Involves being available upon short notice
16 and older Joyce Leviton Asher at [email protected]