Shomrei Ha’aretz/Environmental Programs


For more than 15 years, FJMC Men’s Clubs have been cleaning the beaches, composting waste into natural fertilizer, visiting parks with their families and friends, growing fruits and vegetables for donations to community food banks and more. We have been teaching environmental lessons from the Torah.  The FJMC online store markets soy-based Shabbat candles, solar powered Ner Tamids, bio-degradable consumer products and other natural products.  

This Shomrei Ha’aretz affinity group webpage has many examples of Men’s Clubs organizing, planning, marketing and presenting successful diverse environmental programs that involve the congregation, young families, men and women. Some of the programs received Torch awards.

Following are ideas and resources that will help your club design and present programs that will grow your Club, activate your congregation, and contribute to protecting the Earth.

Shomrei Ha’aretz Program Ideas

Watch a webinar that explains more details about each of these programs.


  1. “Jews Gleaning for the Poor”  -The Olam Tikvah Men’s Club conducts an annual gleaning for the poor at a synagogue member couple’s farm, engaging members and families of all ages in collecting vegetable for a local food bank. The goal of the program is to engage the community in performing and learning about the mitzvah of gleaning and performing tzedakah for the poor.  Olam Tikvah – Fairfax, VA.  Robert Watts .
  2. “Torah Walk in the Park”  – Beth Torah Men’s Club invited young people from the congregation to visit Oleta State Park for a fun day of outdoor kayaking.  Our congregational Rabbi Mario Rojzman challenged us to bring some meaningful learning into the program; thus our kayaking outing became “The Torah Walk.”  We included two environmental learning sessions – one study session from the Torah created a debate – click here – and the other taught us about our natural surroundings. We added food and kayaking fun for a well rounded Shomrei Ha’aretz program. Beth Torah, North Miami Beach, FL. Ed Margolis 

Temple Sinai Men’s Club, Dresher, PA, Bruce Fagan:

“Synagogue-wide Recycling” – The goal of this program is to raise awareness and encourage ongoing recycling throughout the synagogue. We placed plastic and paper recycling receptacles in the various offices, religious school wing, auditorium, kitchen and sanctuary. We added a large recycling bin at the loading dock and contracted for weekly pick-ups from the synagogue’s trash hauler.

Adath Israel Brotherhood, Cincinnati, OH, Dr. Hamilton Lempert:

This project created a garden on the premises of the Synagogue that was planted, tended and harvested by our Brotherhood and with strong participation by our 5th grade religious school students. The harvest was donated to local food pantries.

Tifereth Israel Men’s Club, Columbus, OH, David Roseman:

Encouraged by the FJMC’s Shomrei Ha’aretz program, The Men’s Club of Tifereth Israel first asked our member, David Roseman, to perform an audit of our synagogue’s use of technology to reduce its ecological footprint. We used that audit to help our synagogue director to target ways to incorporate such activities in his daily administration of the shul. In the past six months, we’ve set up the Green Committee, with David at its head, as a stand-alone group working with the director.

  1. “Energy Conservation, GreenFaith Energy Shield Weekend” A FJMC-GreenFaith Energy Shield weekend was held by Temple Torah, worship services with a Rabbi-environmentalist scholar in residence, educational classes with energy, environment and health.   All arms of the Temple and all ages were involved. Sunday Men’s Club had a very busy morning planned something for all ages. They covered all the bases; Religion, Environment, Food, Water, Education, Donations and Health.  Temple Torah, W. Boynton Beach, FL. Jeff Charnow,
  2. Green Footsteps to the Future; an Environmental Fair was a joint project of the Men’s Clubs and USYs of Temple TBO/BT, Clark, NJ (location of event) and CBI, Scotch Plains, NJ. The program consisted of two key note speakers discussing the religious basis of environmental ethics, six workshops and literature and product tables from exhibitors. Temple Beth O’r-Beth Torah – Clark, NJ. Dr. Mike Miller

Shomrei Ha'aretz Resources - see the sidebar.