Building our community
Annual social action grants available.
Nonprofit organizations are invited to submit applications to the Biberstein Social Action Fund for grants in support of projects addressing poverty, discrimination, abuse and neglect issues in Yolo County.
The fund was established in 2002 by the Board of Directors of Congregation Bet Haverim, Jewish Fellowship of Davis, to honor Ernie and Hannah Biberstein, who are among the founding members of the synagogue. The Bibersteins are longtime residents and have devoted much of their lives to community service and social justice. We mourn the loss of Hannah, who passed away in April 2011.
The goal of the annual awards made from the Biberstein Social Action Fund is to help groups in their efforts to meet unfulfilled needs. Special consideration is given to new and/or innovative projects.
An annual Call for Proposals is released each September. Grants ranging from $500 to $2,000 are awarded in December. A group of Bet Haverim congregants reviews grant applications. Current Biberstein Fund members are congregants Ernie Biberstein, Amy Abramson, Anne Gieseke, Sandy Jones, Joan Sublett, Shoshana Zatz, and Rabbi Greg Wolfe.
Questions may be directed to the Biberstein Social Action Fund at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Bibersteins were among the founders of Davis Community Meals, where they served as board members and officers. They have been active in a variety of interfaith groups including the Yolo Interfaith Immigration Network and Celebration of Abraham, which brings together Jews, Muslims, and Christians. They were recipients of the Brinley Award for community service, the Thong Hy Huynh Memorial Humanitarian Award, and the PeaceForce Award by Teach Peace. In 2016, Ernie received a Justice Leadership Award from the Multi-Cultural Council in Yolo County.
Ernie Biberstein is a professor emeritus of the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. Hannah Biberstein was a mediator in the original city of Davis mediation program, chaired the city’s Social Services Commission, and served on the Affordable Housing Task Force.
In 2020, the following grants totaling $14,500 were awarded:
Empower Yolo – Meals for Project Room Key residents in Woodland
Fourth and Hope – Sheets & blankets for new Emergency Shelter in Woodland
Interfaith Rotating Winter Shelter – Furnishings for apartments for individuals without homes in Davis
Make It Happen for Yolo County – Support and move-in baskets to transition aged (18-24) underserved youth in Yolo County, primarily those leaving foster care.
Meals on Wheels Yolo County – Weekend Food Project to provide shelf-stable groceries to low-income homebound seniors.
Multicultural Families Rock – Multicultural and bilingual children’s books for donation to communities in need.
NorCal Trykers – Customized adaptive tricycles for children with special needs.
Personal Care Pantry (WUMC) – Personal care items for low and very low-income Woodland residents.
STEAC – Financial assistance for textbook purchases for low-income community college students at SCC and WCC.
Suicide Prevention of Yolo County – Equipment for crisis line volunteers to address COVID-19 safety concerns