What are JCoSD Cohorts?

Our Cohorts are the heart and soul of JCo: We aim to build a strong, engaging, and warm Jewish community banded together through collaboration and common interest. We find our own spirituality and passion by organizing around themes that inspire us. We welcome new Cohorts to form at any time.

All members and guests are welcome at all Cohort meetings. We have a wonderful time brainstorming, noshing, supporting each other, and changing the face of JCo and our communities.  We work with others to create and share our gifts. We come together for community engagement and social action. Each Cohort communicates what they are discussing and accomplishing with the rest of the JCo community so that everyone knows the many amazing opportunities for involvement.

To be added to ANY of the email lists for a Cohort, please contact or Rabbi/Cantor Gabi Arad at

Visual Arts

JCo Publication
Social Action: Tikkun
Health & Healing

Adult Classes
Education and Youth Programs

Cohorts Overview from Fall 2015 (PDF)

Visual Arts Cohort

Visual Arts Cohort members and guests often focus their conversations around their artistic interests, creativity, and self-expressions. The Visual Arts Cohort also organizes special Shabbat services with opportunities for self-expression. For Rosh Hashanah 5775 (2014), the Cohort led “Changing the Face of the New Year”, which focused on revealing and concealing ourselves with mask making.

The Visual Arts Cohort also likes to showcase all JCo members’ unique talents. Salon Showcases have been held with great success, with more to come. Showcases are open to all JCo members and guests-with-members. These are opportunities to share one’s talents. Showcases welcome writers, visual artists, performing artists, musicians, chefs, business-brainstorming, and more. The format is a few minutes of presenting in an informal setting, with the optional opportunity for feedback or critiques. The Cohort also would like to hold cooking classes and to create group performances with acting, music, and dance: a “JCo Cabaret Night!” More ideas are sure to come from this creative crowd, as it expands and changes.

A related but separate Cohort is doing a JCo Publication. Join one or both! Contact to join!

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JCo Publication Cohort

People are working on the creation of an e-publication featuring written pieces from members of the JCo community, as well as a directory of member services and other special articles. All members are warmly invited to contribute. Everyone has something valuable to share. Attend cohort meetings to brainstorm a name, assign fun columns, and maybe even pick design, font and colors.

WOW: Yes, wow! We want the wow factor and YOU can bring it. You don’t need to be a writer or an editor — just have a passion or an interest and we’ll show you how you can author your very own monthly JCo column with bio and headshot. Wow!

A related but separate Cohort focuses on Visual Arts. Join one or both! Contact to join!

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Social Action Cohort: “Tikkun”

The Tikkun Cohort works on solutions to problems affecting our community, as well as our country and world. In response to our members’ interest, the first issue being tackled is hunger and homelessness. JCoSD is partnering with local organizations, namely Fill-a-Belly and Kitchens for Good to directly support those in plight. JCoSD has also developed Jewish and interfaith relationships with other local organizations, and together we undertake special volunteer efforts. (For support of Israel, please see that specific Cohort’s information below.) JCoSD members and visitors can lend support to our ongoing effort to fight hunger by bringing fresh produce and canned goods when they attend any JCoSD service or event.

Watch for events that help to bring attention to these issues, for example: movies, lectures, fund raising activities, and programs that involve our youth by giving them the opportunity to fulfill service-learning requirements and most importantly to experience Tikkun. As the Tikkun Cohort grows, so will its areas of interest and issues that we choose to take on. All ideas and suggestions are welcome as we continue in the true spirit of the Jewish Collaborative of San Diego. Contact to join!

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Nature Cohort

Nature is a key element to all we do. We take walks, explore hidden nooks and crannies in San Diego County, hold Sukkot services outside in the Sukkah, plant things on Tu B’shvat, and more. Most of all, we take advantage of our beautiful Southern California parks and outdoor spaces whenever possible to gather and enjoy each other’s company.  This Cohort contributes to our connection to Nature and our spirituality by providing activities, learning opportunities, hikes, and fun events outdoors. Contact to join!

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Israel Cohort

This Cohort has a mission of generating love, excitement, and pride among members’ and guests’ interest for Israel, by active participation in social, cultural, and political events in support of and which celebrate the national homeland for the Jewish people. The cohort’s mission will be further re-enforced with bi-annual trips to Israel. Contact to join!

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Games Cohort

When is the last time you built a hotel on Boardwalk? Yearning to shout out, “Yahtzee?” Got your poker face on? Are you missing the playfulness in life? Welcome to JCo’s Game Cohort where we inject the fun back into our lives by playing poker, mahjong, Scrabble, Rummikub, and any other board game you can imagine, all while sharing conversation and making new friends. Want to teach a new game? You’re hired! Just learning? Great! Bring a guest and come out monthly to warm up the dice with us!  C’mon – you know you’re feeling lucky! (Teens and adults only, please.) Contact to join!

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Health and Healing Cohort

The Health and Healing Cohort implements both short- and long-term projects addressing many aspects of health from a truly holistic approach.  This means Mind, Body, and Spirit.  Such topics include but are not limited to keeping the body healthy, fitness, massage, mental health, and spiritual health. Our Jewish tradition emphasizes taking care of the body and keeping a balance.  It is also important to keep the body working well to remove physical distractions to spiritual growth.  Just as it is important that the individuals in our community are doing well to increase the function of the community, the various parts of the body must be working well to enhance the experience of living and growing spiritually.

There are many laws surrounding health, the body, and eating in our tradition and culture.  Our programs are designed to explore these areas.  We will add a support group for parents of teens as we grow. Our sport and athletic groups fall under this category, as well. This Cohort is expanding as we do. If there is a topic you would like to see or perhaps you would like to share yourself, please let us know. Contact to join!

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A Word about Adult Classes

As a cooperative, our adult classes are run by members and JCo organizers from the community. Classes have included thus far: mindfulness & presence, kabbalah, meditation, a Hebrew marathon, Shabbat text study, and yoga. These classes change and evolve on an on-going basis and are posted to our website. Adult classes are open to all those ages 16 and up. For more information about attending OR leading a class, please contact Rabbi Josh.

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