I discovered Conejo Jewish Outreach recently. I attended one of the Shabbat dinners. I enjoyed the dinner and service so much that I offered to volunteer my help to the organization. Conejo Jewish Outreach can fill a void of services that other organization in the Conejo Valley, California do not perform. I am very confident that this organization will grow into a major Jewish landmark in the Conejo Valley.
My husband and I are an interfaith couple, and it's hard to find places that welcome us with open arms. Conejo Jewish Outreach has been a wonderful way for me to introduce my non-Jewish husband and my 4 year old son to celebrating the Jewish Holidays in a warm and friendly environment. The music has been amazing and Rabbi Len leads a lovely service.
I came to this group at the behest of some of my friends who are planning for the group. It was very friendly and spiritual group. The experience is all about tzedakah and reflectioon. The music is unbelievable. Most of the time Justin Stein has been acting Cantor. He has a divine voice. I am well acquainted with him.I had heard Rabbi Muroff first at a hospice service where he did a fabulous job. It is quite a warm and lovely service delivered with great sincerity to a great group of folks.
When my husband was receiving care from VITAS Innovative Hospice earlier this year, we requested a visit from their hospice rabbi. Rabbi Len Muroff helped my family through an extremely difficult time. As unaffiliated, mostly cultural Jews, we didn't have a place or someone to turn to for our spiritual needs at this time. Rabbi Len stepped in offering us comfort and piece of mind. He was available work with us to prepare and officiate at two memorial services, one for family and friends and then again at Valley Presbyterian Hospital for employees and staff. We were truly grateful for his care and compassion. When Rabbi Len mentioned that he wanted to start a Jewish Outreach Group in the Agoura Hills area, I was delighted to sign on to help him, both as a way of saying thank you and because I had a need to belong to a community that a group like this could become. I also have experience with fundraising, event planning and working with JCCs in Michigan, Wisconsin and Northern California that would be beneficial. Conejo Jewish Outreach (www.conejojewishoutreach.org) is the group we have founded. The first of our monthly Potluck Shabbat Dinners was in June, with guest musicians adding a special touch to services led by Rabbi Muroff. We have had about 40 participants, adults and children, at each gathering with new families joining in each time and a growing list of interested people. There is a planning committee that meets monthly to discuss social action organizations and causes where our members could volunteer and ask people from those organizations come to our gatherings. Most importantly, as a very new organization, we discuss ways to attract more families to our group, are in the process of getting our Non Profit paperwork filed and are constantly seeking ideas for new funding opportunities to keep us up and running. At the moment our funding comes from participants, only the adults, who pay a small fee to cover the musician's fee. Members have been taking turns holding the Shabbat dinners at their houses, mostly outdoors during the summer months, but now that we are heading into colder weather we need a place to move our activities inside. That will take money we haven't figured out how to raise as yet. But some of our new participants have agreed to join our planning group with new ideas and enthusiasm. We definitely need the exposure that this award could provide.