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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, and the promotion of social justice in Yolo County.


The fund was established in November 2002 by the Board of Directors of Congregation Bet Haverim, Jewish Fellowship of Davis, on the occasion of Ernie’s 80th birthday to honor Ernie and Hannah Biberstein, founding members of the synagogue and longtime Davis residents who devoted much of their lives to community service and social justice.

An annual Call for Proposals is released each Fall. Grants ranging from $500 to $2,000 are awarded in December. The Biberstein Fund members review the proposals. Current Biberstein Fund members include Congregation Bet Haverim partners Ernie Biberstein, Amy Abramson, Anne Gieseke, Sandy Jones, Joan Sublett, Shoshana Zatz, and Rabbi Bess Wohlner and Rabbi Jeremy Simons.

Download the 2023 Grant Application HERE. Completed applications, or questions, should be emailed to cbhbibersteinfund@gmail.com. Grant proposals must be submitted no later than October 20, 2023. This email is checked regularly through the grant period and only occasionally for the remainder of the year. If you need immediate assistance after the grant period, please contact Congregation Bet Haverim at (530) 758-0842.

Photo of Ernie and Hannah BibersteinThe 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, 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 2022, the following grants totaling $18,475 were awarded:

The Bike Campaign – Support for the Chat Trishaw and Cycle Without Age programs.

Celebration of Abraham – Upgrade website and newsletter to improve engagement in community service projects.

Grace Garden – Improve garden path infrastructure and ensure it meets accessibility and ADA standards.

HEART of Davis – Supplies for emergency shelter meals.

iDream – The Mac Give Back Project – Purchase parts to upgrade/refurbish used computers for donation to underserved populations.

Meals on Wheels Yolo County – Support for Weekend Food Project that delivered produce and shelf-stable foods to 200 of the most very low-income MOW Yolo seniors.

Mercer Veterinary Clinic – Assist in meeting the veterinary needs of underserved unhoused community and their pets through the provision of lab work, medication and supplies.

Personal Care Pantry – Hygiene and home cleaning supplies for low-income Woodland residents.

Purple Tree Cafe – Upgrade baking and sales operations including replacement of equipment and signage.

St. James Conference, Society of St. Vincent de Paul – Expand outreach  and fundraising efforts to further the mission of providing financial assistance to low-income and unhoused individuals.

STEAC –Offset the cost of STEAC’s Clothing programs for 300 low-income clients.

Suicide Prevention of Yolo County – Support for crisis line volunteers with vouchers for food gift cards at local grocery stores.

Yolo Community Care Continuum – Support YCCC’s programs for Farmhouse clients that contribute to increased mental health stability.

Yolo Crisis Nursery – Purchase and install a child-sized outdoor handwashing station for children under YCN’s care.

Click to Make a Donation to the Biberstein Fund
*Click donations to specialized funds to access the Biberstein fund.

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As the center of Jewish community life in Davis and the surrounding area, we are committed to building a community which meets the educational, spiritual and social needs of people in all stages of life.

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