March 2019 Newsletter

March 21st, 2019


I hope you’re doing great. You’re receiving this email as the FIRST official newsletter from Shamayim!

We thought now would be the perfect time to start monthly updates considering we’ve just rebranded from The Shamayim V’Aretz Institute to “Shamayim: Jewish Animal Advocacy!” We hope that with this change a broader spectrum of the Jewish community will find our message of compassion for all beings. to resonate more deeply.

We’ll be sending these newsletters out on a monthly basis so you can get updates on our programs and other things we’re working on as an organization. Below you will find a short recap from our retreat that just took place, descriptions of our college fellowship program and synagogue vegan challenge, as well as links to attend/apply to these opportunities!


We just returned from our annual Jewish animal advocacy retreat that occurred March 15 -17 in Reisterstown, Maryland at The Pearlstone Center! For the 6th time, we gathered as a nationwide (and 2 from Canada!) Jewish, vegan and veg-curious community to learn, grow and expand. The weekend was filled with inspiring sessions, delicious vegan, kosher food and wonderful company! Check out all the photos on our FB page here. We also live-streamed two of Sunday’s sessions on our page that are available for viewing:

Interested in joining us next year?
The registration for our 2020 Retreat at the Brandeis-Bardin Institute in Los Angeles from February 7th – 9th is up with early bird prices! Register here.


Sponsored by VegFund

We’re currently in our second cohort of SVC participants. So far we have helped 10 synagogues across North America incorporate plant-based food and education into their programming!

The goal of the Synagogue Vegan Challenge is simple: Experiment with your community having regular vegan programming for a year! This adventure is easy, spiritually uplifting, & delicious. Five (5) synagogues are chosen each year for this program and granted $5,000 each. Throughout the year, the selected synagogues serve plant-based meals, whether it’s at kiddush, b’nai mitzvot, Shabbat, or any life-cycle event and provide educational opportunities for their community (including classes, documentaries, etc.) 

Apply to the Synagogue Vegan Challenge! – Applications for the third cohort will opening in the next few weeks. Email Erica ( to be notified when applications open, or to ask about the program.

College Fellowship Program

Co-sponsored by A Well-Fed World

Our current cohort of college fellows is doing great work to help animals by promoting veganism through a Jewish lens on their campuses at Cornell, Sarah Lawrence College, Elon University, Florida Atlantic University, The University of Vermont, Colorado State University and Rutgers University.

If you’re not familiar, the Shamayim Campus Fellowship trains Jewish students who care about animals to take action. Fellows will host 5-6 on-campus events related to Jewish veganism, participate in monthly conference calls, as well as learn how to raise awareness and best articulate animal welfare causes and Jewish veganism. Fellows are given a $500 stipend upon completion of the program.

Do you, or a student you know have an interest in this applying to the fellowship? Apply here! – Interview process will begin in April.

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