Hope Gardens at Hillel

Recently, Hope Gardens was invited to spend the evening with Hillel for a round of insightful discussion and dinner. The event took place during their weekly Friday dinners but had a specific focus for the night: social action and justice. Other organizations present include UNC’s Heelraisers and FLO Food. 

The event started out with light conversations and a warm welcome from the members at Hillel. Hope Gardens gave a quick introduction about what we do to help increase food access, mentioning our HopeCooks Program, which hosts cooking sessions with low-income participants, and our Outreach committee, which hosts free community dinners. We then moved into separate groups that each had a discussion topic facilitated by a Hillel member. The one we attended dealt specifically with how social action and justice affect a community and a society. Together, we defined what community and society meant to us and talked about “Tikkun Olam,” a Hebrew phrase which means to perform acts of kindness to help better the world. I feel this is what Hope Garden strives to do, and the additional insight from everyone participating made us really think about the different aspects of social justice. This included discussing the benefits of being involved in various acts of social justice, as well as the unintended implications that those acts may bring.

The night concluded with a delicious dinner full of healthy foods. Here, we were able to talk more intimately with one another under a very lively atmosphere. Overall, we were really thankful for the opportunity to join Hillel in discussing what we are most passionate about. It was a way for us to meet new people, share ideas, and learn about community service opportunities in Hillel as well.