Our Caring Community

Caring and Inclusion:

Andy Baldwin

Nancy Reder

COVID-19 Response

TRS is here for every member of our community. If you need help during this time – groceries, other immediate needs, or someone to talk to – please reach out to us so that we can reach out to you.

Contact Anita Thornton at athornton@templerodefshalom.org.

If you have lost your job or have other COVID-19 related financial challenges, please contact us for confidential assistance.

If you live in Fairfax or Arlington Counties and are in need of assistance:

Click here for a chart of resources available from Fairfax County.

Click here for the latest food, health and basic resources available from Fairfax County updated regularly.

Click here to the Arlington County website for their latest health and financial resources.

In addition, please review our COVID-19 Resources page and the Social Action Resources page for additional ways to be involved.


The goal of the Caring Committee is to provide Temple members a way of fulfilling the mitzvah of performing acts of G’milut Chasadim (deeds of loving kindness) within the Temple community. Since all Jews are enjoined to perform this mitzvah, we are, in fact, all members of the Caring Committee. The core of the TRS Caring Committee is a group of coordinators who connect Temple members and/or their families who need help with other Temple members who can help. Our Committee core is made up of subcommittees that deal with immediate needs (crises), mutual assistance (self-help), and education. Please consult the list below.

The Caring Committee continues to seek out members who need help, and we continue to try different ideas and ways to expand participation. We keep a list of volunteers who wish to help. Temple members who wish to be included on the volunteer list or serve as a coordinator are invited to contact one of the committee chairs. TRS members who need assistance that do not fall into one of the categories below are encouraged to contact Julie Kaplan in the Temple office at (703) 532-2217, or a member of the TRS clergy.


Members help families coping with a death in the family and assist with burial arrangements. The Chavrah Kadushah (the Holy Fellowship), the burial society, was one of the first groups set up by Jews in the Diaspora. Rodef Shalom carries on this beautiful tradition through the Bereavement Subcommittee. Serving on this committee fulfills mitzvah, the commandment of comforting the mourner. If you wish to participate as a volunteer, please contact Anita Thornton at (703) 532-2217.

Widows and Widower Support

TRS offers its members “Next Step” groups for widows and widowers who are beyond the early stages of bereavement—post 6-12 months.  (Please visit the Support Groups page.)  There is also support available for widows and widowers immediately following the death of a spouse and before a new group begins.  Members of ongoing Next Step groups are available to provide information, mentoring, and an understanding ear.  For more information, contact Debbie Massey, 703-532-0942.

Bikkur Cholim (Visitation of the Sick)

This subcommittee seeks to meet two needs. First, we wish to encourage caring visits in the congregation by educating people through published guidance based on professional sources. Second, we wish to attract and train volunteers to respond to the clergy’s requests for visits to ill and convalescing congregational members. Bikkur Cholim continues the tradition dating to the early days of the Jewish Diaspora of visiting the sick. Interested members are very welcome and should contact the committee chair/s.

Rodef Rides

Our new Volunteer Rides Program for TRS members By TRS members! Please visit our Rodef Rides webpage for more information.

Support Groups

Our Temple has a number of support groups to help those in our congregation.  Please visit our Support Groups webpage for more information.

Community Resources

JSSA is Here to Help
Thanks to the continuing partnership between Temple Rodef Shalom and the Jewish Social Service Agency (JSSA), JSSA is available to provide support and referrals to congregants in need as a result of emotional, social, or physical challenges. JSSA supports individuals, couples, and families through mental health counseling, services for children and adolescents, older adult services, career programs and adoption assistance.  Visit the JSSA website.

Elder Care/Jewish Council for the Aging
Currently the Elder Care subcommittee is working in conjunction with the Jewish Council for the Aging (JCA) to meet the needs of elderly temple members and/or families with elder care issues, whether local or out of the area. Services provided include a Senior Helpline that can be reached at (703) 425-0999 for information or assistance on housing options, financial aid, or transportation. TRS volunteers have also provided rides to services for elderly temple members and assistance in purchasing groceries and other tasks. Visit the JCA website.

Mental Health Resources and Information:

National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI): www.nami.org

Suicide.org – Suicide prevention, awareness, and support: www.suicide.org

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH): www.nimh.nih.gov

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA): www.samhsa.gov

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255) www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org

Children and Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (CHADD): www.chadd.org

Child and Adolescent Bipolar Foundation: www.bpkids.org

The Trevor Project (LGBT mental health/suicide prevention): www.trevorproject.org

Anxiety Disorders Association of America: www.adaa.org

National Eating Disorders Association: www.nationaleatingdisorders.org

Alcoholics Anonymous: www.aa.org

Narcotics Anonymous: www.na.org

Gamblers Anonymous: www.gamblersanonymous.org

Alzheimer’s Association: www.alz.org

Alzheimer’s Education

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: www.dbsalliance.org

National Autism Association: www.nationalautismassociation.org

Veterans Crisis Line (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs): 1-800-273-8255 (press 1)

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs – Mental Health: www.mentalhealth.va.gov

Mental Health America: www.mentalhealthamerica.net