MAZON Project Volunteer Sign-Ups for Sunday Dinners at the HOUSING MATTERS Homeless Shelters, 115 Coral St., Santa Cruz

Welcome to the MAZON Project! 

One of the highest religious acts of Judaism is to

share your bread with the hungry!

Please join Temple Beth El's


for every TBE household to help fight the injustice of hunger by contributing to at least one meal at our local homeless shelter, at least once per year. Let's all, collectively, put our Jewish values into ACTION!


 * Join the Magnificent MAZON Volunteers * 

Temple Beth El has been providing meals to a local Homeless Shelter every Sunday since 1988. Please sign up to help continue this important tradition.

It's a mitzvah!

**(As of June 1, 2021, we will be providing weekly, Sunday dinners to 70 residents at the HOUSING MATTERS Homeless Shelters at 115 Coral St., every week of the year--rather than to 40 people every Sunday at the River Street Shelter formerly, at the same address.) To learn more about HOUSING MATTERS, check out their website here:

• IF YOU HAVE NEVER SIGNED UP FOR MAZON, YOU NEED TO CREATE A LOGIN ID & PASSWORD FIRST (BEFORE YOUR FIRST SIGN UP). Thereafter, Login before you attempt to sign up for a Volunteer date.

• To participate, please choose a date on which to contribute a dish to our Sunday Dinner, any available week at the HOUSING MATTERS Homeless Shelter. Please specify on the Sign Up List what you are going to provide so the Shelter can post the menu in advance, and supplement the meal with any compatible leftovers. 

• Meals should be dropped off Sunday, between 2:00 - 4:00 p.m., at:

• HOUSING MATTERS Shelter, 115 Coral St., Santa Cruz (just off Hwy 9)

HOUSING MATTERS Phone #: (831) 458-6020. Contact MAZON Project Coordinator, Robin Belkin ([email protected]; 831/476-9144; 251-7115), if you encounter any problems or wish to make special arrangements. If Robin is unavailable, Evyn Simpson is the HOUSING MATTERS Asst. Director of Programs, and Anthony Pignoli is the Kitchen Mgr. They can be reached by calling the HOUSING MATTERS Shelter (above). Only if you cannot reach them at that phone number, Anthony can be reached at: (831) 889-0059 or Evyn can be reached on her personal cell phone at: (530) 776-4936, if you cannot reach Robin and you need to make a special, ADVANCE arrangement for early food drop-off, to cook in the Shelter kitchen, or other arrangements, and Robin has not been available...  

• Advance sign-up is required (below--scroll down). 

• Please plan enough food for large helpings and some seconds--like you're cooking for 70 hungry teenagers. At Sunday dinner, many shelter residents haven't eaten all day but for a small breakfast.

• You may bring nutritious, home-cooked food with lots of fresh ingredients or purchase similar home-style cooked food, with lots of love. (No canned meals, please, e.g., chili or stew.) Please try to limit salt as many residents are on low-sodium diets.

• For Entrees, please pay attention to what anyone has signed up to bring already, and try to provide the same or at least a compatible dish, if possible, but it's not essential.

• Need help figuring out what dish to contribute to MAZON? Contact Robin for ideas: [email protected], or just Google "Easy Salads," "Easy Desserts" or "Easy Casseroles" or use the search term, "Potluck" before each category. Then multiply the recipe to make the number of servings you need.

Don't know what container to use for your MAZON contribution? Use your own dishes and pick them up the next day, or have the Shelter staff transfer the contents to their container upon delivery. can use a disposable dish (e.g., a plastic, 1 lb, fresh spinach or spring mix container can be used to make your salads directly in the containers (w/dressing on the side); or you can reuse those containers to layer cookies, cupcakes, cornbread, etc., or to transport rice or pasta dishes, stews, chili, roasted vegetables, etc.). If you don't want to use your own baking dishes, disposable, foil, roasting pans can be used for casseroles."

• All contributions are deeply appreciated, and for variety if desired, those who are able, may wish to consider providing something homemade other than lasagna or whole chicken (e.g., casseroles, stews--or with advance arrangements by emailing Robin--assemble your own: taco bar, burrito bar, baked potato bar, or BBQ on site kabobs or burgers with advance notice to the Shelter (email Robin well in advance) so they can have the BBQ's ready, etc. 

• Meals should be dropped off between 2:00-4:00 pm as dinner is served at 5:30 pm.  If you are contributing something that requires heating, please bring it early enough to be heated by 5:00 pm, so some can be packaged to go for those that don't eat in the dining room, and served to everyone else by 5:30 p.m.  Please do not bring frozen food unless it can be heated by 5:00 p.m. 

• To help strengthen the sense of community among usMAZON volunteers are invited to arrive early to prepare their food in the shelter kitchen with advance notice (To do so, Email Robin, MAZON Coordinator at [email protected] or call 831/476-9144). We will not be able to stay and serve dinner, and/or stay and eat with the Shelter residents again until COVID-19 precautions are lifted.

• When you drop off food, please drive up to the front gate at the HOUSING MATTERS SHELTER at 115 Coral Street,  and notify the personnel on duty that you are delivering Sunday dinner to the kitchen. They will either send someone to pick up your food at the entrance gate, or direct you to drive inside to a small parking area in front of the dining hall in the first building on the right (if a parking space is available), and someone will pick up your food there. 

If the entrance is too congested when you arrive, call the Shelter kitchen 458-6020 from the parking lot at Coral Plaza, across the street, and ask them if they can send someone with a cart to collect your food.

• If you cannot deliver your food between 2:00 and 4:00 pm, please contact one of the other MAZON Volunteers listed on that week's SignUp to help with your delivery, or contact MAZON Coordinator, Robin ([email protected]) well in advance, to arrange to drop off your food early--e.g., between 11 a.m., and noon (before lunch).

• Please check the MAZON SignUpGenius log regularly for cancelations so we don't always have to email the entire group whenever someone cancels. 

Please sign up here (BELOW) whenever you can--with your family, with a friend, with your chavurah, with any TBE group or class, and/or in honor of any special occassion (Scroll Down): 

• Directions to 115 Coral Street (off Hwy 9):

Take River Street towards Felton – turn LEFT on Fern Street – turn LEFT on Limekiln – turn LEFT on Coral St.– turn RIGHT at the driveway before the multi-story Rebele Family Shelter. Stop at the wrought iron gate, tell the personnel on duty or push the call button, and announce that you are delivering Sunday dinner for the HOUSING MATTERS Shelter. (If nobody responds, please call the Shelter from your cell phone: (831) 458-6020.) Then, either they will send someone to pick up your food at the gate entrance or direct you to drive inside to the parking area in front of the HOUSING MATTERS dining hall in the first building on the right.  

Thank you very much for your generous contribution to Temple Beth El's MAZON Project!

If you offer your compassion to the hungry
           And satisfy the famished creature
      Then shall your light shine in darkness
      And your gloom shall be like noonday.
                          - Isaiah 58:10

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Dear Magnificent MAZON Volunteers,

Please review the following MAZON Project Sunday meal delivery changes in place for the time being, as Corona Virus precautions:

1) As of May 1, 2021, The River Street Shelter was closed. Instead, we are redirecting our meals to the larger Housing Matters Shelter at the same address at 115 Coral St., but located inside the gate in the 1st building on the right. 

2) MAZON meals shall be delivered by notifying personnel at the Security Gate entrance to the HOUSING MATTERS Shelter at 115 Coral St., to request someone to come collect your food from your car at the gate or be directed to a parking space just inside the gate to the right, in front of the HOUSING MATTERS Shelter dining hall (i.e., to deliver food, we will no longer need to go inside the Shelter at all, nor come into direct contact with anyone).

3) Meals can now be prepared in the HOUSING MATTERS Shelter kitchen with advance notice, but we cannot stay and serve the food until COVID-19 precautions are lifted.

4) Per Robin's prior email, please take extra food preparation precautions:

• Follow all CDC guidelines to wash your cooking surfaces, implements & utensils, ingredients, and hands thoroughly with soap and hot water and dry them with paper towels or a dedicated towel (no shared towels) throughout the process of preparing this food. 

• Don't cook if you are sick or are exposed to someone that is ill; but rather withdraw your name from the SignUpGenius page by clicking on: "Change My Sign-up," at the bottom of the narrative above the actual sign-up log. 

If you know another MAZON volunteer that may be able to fill in for you, please notify them and ask them to sign up for your time slot once you've removed your name. Also, FYI, the SignUpGenius system should automatically notify Robin whenever someone changes their sign up, but you can always give her the heads up too, just to make sure, by emailing [email protected]

Stay safe, take care, and be well!


Created by:   Robin Belkin for Temple Beth El, Aptos
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