Recap of Kehilla’s steps towards offering sanctuary:
1985: Kehilla declared itself a sanctuary congregation and became an active member of the East Bay Sanctuary Covenant, a network of faith communities engaged in helping refugees escape death squads in El Salvador.
2016: Our High Holy Days theme focused on immigrants and refugees.
November 22, 2016: The Kehilla Board of Trustees approved a resolution reconfirming our commitment to sanctuary, which included exploring the feasibility of providing space in our building for physical sanctuary.
March 27, 2018: After in-depth exploration, the Kehilla Board of Trustees approved a motion in support of providing physical sanctuary.
May 12, 2018: The Sanctuary Task Force held an all-day Sanctuary Shabbat event for the Kehilla community, which included a Shabbat service on topic of sanctuary, speakers, listening circles, Q&A and an information session. More information on our process towards sanctuary was shared in Kol Kehilla and on the Kehilla website.
and in information/Q&A sessions for Kehilla members and special sessions for Kehilla School parents.
Since May 2018, the Sanctuary Task Force has been focused on the nuts and bolts of the sanctuary project.
-We have now raised enough money to install a shower and have submitted plans to the City of Piedmont.
-We are working on plans to renovate and furnish a room to be used by a sanctuary guest.
– We have envisioned how to create a space in the Kehilla kitchen for sanctuary guests and are writing guidelines for the use of the kitchen.
-We are developing needed documents, including information and training materials for staff and building users, volunteers and sanctuary guests.
-We are beginning the process of recruiting and preparing volunteers for support of sanctuary guests. To this end, we will hold a special recruitment event in the Kehilla sanctuary on Feb. 3rd, 2019 from 4-6pm. This will be a wonderful opportunity for you to learn how you can participate in this exciting project!