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Tikkun Olam at Home

While TBO’s building is closed as we all continue to practice social distancing, our work continues, including Tikkun Olam - social action and the pursuit of social justice. Each week, we’ll bring you mitzvot you can do from your own home. These mitzvot will represent the priorities of our Tikkun Olam Committee, and will offer a variety of actions, from advocacy to hands-on projects to education. By doing these mitzvot, we can direct our time and talent towards achieving one of our highest Jewish values, repairing the world, at this time when it is so sorely needed.

Temple Beth Or is reaching out to encourage your participation in the November election as part of the Reform Movement's Every Voice Every Vote Campaign. Every Vote is the Reform Jewish Movement's 2020 civic engagement campaign, a nonpartisan effort to strengthen our democracy by encouraging everyone to participate in the U.S. election and ensuring that Reform Jewish values are represented in the public square. We hope to mobilize 100% of the Temple's eligible voters to cast a ballot in the November election.


Voting by Absentee Ballot in the 2020 Election

We are encouraging you to request an Absentee Ballot for the November election TODAY!

This election, you can cast a ballot safely and securely from home with absentee voting.

Any registered North Carolina voter can choose to vote absentee by mail, no excuse needed.

First, please be sure you are registered to vote at your current address.

You can download the request form here.

WHY vote Absentee?

  • It is safe and convenient: while precautions will be taken at the polls to protect the health of voters, voting by mail-in ballot is an easy way to stay safe and vote.
  • Voting by Absentee Ballot will be popular this year. As many as 40% of voters may choose this option, that’s why it’s important to submit your request for an Absentee Ballot as soon as possible.


HOW do I vote Absentee?

  • Request an Absentee Ballot. An Absentee Ballot request form is attached to this email or click here to download.  
  • It's easy - Just complete and mail the form back to your County Board of Elections. You may also email, fax or hand deliver it. (In Wake County mail it to: Wake County Board of Elections Attn: Absentee PO Box 695 Raleigh, NC 27602. See FAQs on the following page for email, fax, and address).
  • Your Absentee Ballot will be mailed to you by the Board of Elections sometime after September 4, 2020.


Can I change my mind and vote in person if I request an Absentee Ballot?

  • YES! If you have not returned your Absentee Ballot, you may vote early at any early voting site or on Election Day at your precinct. You should destroy your unused/unvoted Absentee Ballot if you decide to vote in person.

Completing and returning your Absentee Ballot

  • After receiving your Absentee Ballot Request Form, your county board of elections will mail you an Absentee Ballot.
  • You need one witness when completing your absentee ballot
  • You can return your completed Absentee Ballot either by:
    • Mail to your county board of elections office or
    • Deliver in Person to your county board of elections office or to an open Early Voting site in your county. If you choose to deliver it to an Early Voting site, please be aware that you must hand it to an Election Official - there are currently no plans for contactless drop off.
    • Consider returning your Ballot as soon as possible after receiving it, to ensure timely receipt by the Board of Elections.

Frequently Asked Questions:


Can I request my Absentee Ballot online?

Yes, there will be an online portal available by early September. However, due to the anticipated large volume of requests it is advisable not to wait, and instead submit the Ballot Request Form NOW by mail, email or fax.


What is the deadline to submit an Absentee Ballot request?

You may request your Absentee Ballot up until 5:00 PM on Tuesday, October 27, 2020 - but don’t wait - the Board of Elections expects a large number of requests this year.


When can I submit my completed Absentee Ballot?

As soon as you receive it: you do not need to wait until in-person voting starts to submit your Ballot.

  • Your ballot must be RETURNED to your county Board of Elections by 5:00 PM no later than Tuesday, November 3, 2020.
  • If mailed, your ballot must be postmarked on or before November 3, 2020

What is the mailing address for the Wake County Board of Elections?

Wake County Board of Elections Attn: Absentee, PO Box 695 Raleigh, NC 27602


Where can I hand deliver a ballot or ballot request form to the Wake County Board of Elections?

            Board of Elections Operation Center 1200 N. New Hope Road Raleigh NC 27610


What is the phone number for the Wake County Board of Elections?

            You can contact the Wake Board of Elections at 919-404-4040


Where can I find more information about voting and the election?

            The Wake County Board of Elections website:


If you have any additional questions or need help either registering to vote or requesting your Absentee Ballot please feel free to email or call: Sherri Thorstad,, 919-349-7925 or Randee Gordon,, 919-302-0575.



Write Postcards to Combat Voter Suppression

 As part of the Religious Action Center’s Civic Engagement Campaign: Every Voice, Every Vote 2020, the Reform Movement has partnered with the  Center for Common Ground’s Reclaim Our Vote Campaign to contact voters in communities of color who are inactive or unregistered for the 2020 election.  The focus is on voters in six states, including North Carolina, that have experienced voter suppression.  The goals are to help them register, do voter education, and get out the vote.  

TBO members can sign up to send postcards to reach out to these low-propensity voters using the Reform Movement's tools and tools from our partner organizations. Request a postcard kit with all the materials necessary to get started.  Each kit will contain 30 postcards, a script containing the message, and a list of recipients provided by local NAACP chapters. This project is ongoing, and will continue through the fall - the messages sent will change with the calendar.   If you have any questions, contact Sherri Thorstad, or Randee Gordon

 Volunteer to make sure Everyone can Vote in November!

We need YOU to help make sure everyone can vote in our upcoming election!  TBO is participating in  multiple nonpartisan efforts to strengthen our democracy and ensure that Reform Jewish values are represented in the public square.

There are a variety of ways to participate - they are described below.  We’ll keep this list updated as new opportunities arise.  

Vote!!!   register to vote, update your registration, request an absentee ballot

  • register or update your registration:  are you registered to vote at your current address?  If you’ve moved since the last election, you need to update your voter registration.   You can register to vote online- if you have a current NC Driver’s license.  You can find more information and a voter registration link at the NC State Board of Elections website:

  • request an absentee ballot: in NC, any registered voter can vote my mail, no excuse necessary.  In this covid environment, many of us have concerns about going to the polls in person in November.  It is safe and easy to vote absentee.  An application for an absentee ballot can be found at the NC State Board of Elections website:

Remind your friends, family and fellow congregants to vote:  and share information about how to request an Absentee Ballot and update their Voter Registration as needed.

Write Postcards to help combat voter suppression.    TBO is proud to be part of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism’s  (the RAC”) Civic Engagement Campaign, Every Voice, Every Vote 2020.  As part of this effort, we’ll be writing postcards to first time and low frequency voters of color in six states that have historically experienced voter suppression (including North Carolina).  For more information about this project, go to  Postcard kits can be requested at

Phone Bank with You Can Vote, a local nonpartisan nonprofit to Get Out the Vote (GOTV).  One conversation at a time you will empower and mobilize community members to become lifelong voters. 

Assist Voters: Join a Wake County Multipartisan Assistance Team (MAT) to help voters living in facilities such as nursing homes. You will be trained and appointed by the Board of Elections to provide assistance with mail-in absentee voting to voters living at facilities such as nursing homes. The makeup of the Team includes, at a minimum, two persons whose voter registration is affiliated with two different political parties. The Team assists voters who may not have a near relative or guardian available to provide assistance in requesting or casting a mail-in absentee ballot.

Become a precinct official (poll worker).  It takes more than 2,000 dedicated volunteers to operate Wake County polling places each election.  More Precinct Officials are needed in your neighborhood. Do your part to provide voting opportunities in your community.  Click here  to learn more.

Special opportunity for students:  if you will be 17 or older on Election Day, you can be a Student Election Assistant.  Student Election Assistants serve at polling places on Election Day and facilitate the voting process.They have similar responsibilities as Precinct Officials and are paid. For more information:


To learn more about any of these opportunities please email or call:


Sherri Thorstad,, 919-349-7925

Randee Gordon,, 919-302-0575


Making Masks for Homeless Individuals In partnership with Pullen Memorial Baptist Church

We are making face masks for the homeless in Raleigh. It can be difficult for homeless individuals to practice social distancing, and many have underlying health conditions that make covid-19 infection more dangerous. We will make and distribute face masks to help keep them safe. You can drop completed masks at the door outside the Temple office (please put them in a sealed envelope marked “Facemask”), or mail them to TBO. Don’t know how to make a mask? TBO member Leni Newell has made a tutorial, that is available here.




Tue, August 11 2020 21 Av 5780