About Us

Who are we? / What is our mission?

The Jewish Collaborative of Orange County (JCoOC) develops innovative and substantive Jewish programs and offers them on an a-la-carte basis to anyone who wants to explore what ignites their “joy of Jewish.”

What do we do?

JCoOC (pronounced “J-Cook”) offers substantive Jewish programming on an a-la-carte basis in different areas of Orange County, based on where there is interest, need and emerging community leadership. These programs are created both independently and in collaboration with other local and national Jewish organizations and fall into five categories:

  1. Creative-traditional Shabbat and holiday services in non-traditional venues
  2. Concierge learning for adults and children
  3. Opportunities to get involved in social justice and interfaith projects
  4. Spiritual support for grief, healing and recovery
  5. Jewish arts partnerships

We are committed to collaboration with both Jewish and other-faith / interfaith partners (see “Our Partnerships”), because we believe that collaborative efforts and cooperation between organizations creates the greatest number of opportunities for people to engagement in Jewish life in Orange County.

How do we do it?

As an organization, our approach is innovative, collaborative, welcoming, inspiring and joyful. 

All of our “experiences” and programs are offered in areas of the county where that type of Jewish program is not readily or consistently available. Much of what we offer focuses on audiences who have expressed a need for a specific type of experience (young families, empty nesters), although our programs are open to everyone.

Our independently developed programming centers on delivering a spiritually based creative-traditional Jewish experience in a non-traditional setting or format.

Our collaborations with other organizations and individual community leaders is characterized by four primary elements we bring to the table:

  • Content – We provide creative Jewish programming with a spiritual component.
  • Vision – We provide an understanding of what it takes to engage people in their Judaism today and into the future.
  • Talent – We have built, and continuously build, relationships with a wide range of rabbis, scholars and teachers; Jewish musicians, artists and performers; social activists; and mental health, healing and wholeness professionals.
  • Leadership – We offer guidance and structure for organizations to collaborate with each other to maximize Orange County residents’ opportunities to participate in Jewish life.

Are we a synagogue?

JCoOC  is not a conventional synagogue. We are spiritually based and offer an array of Shabbat programs, a robust High Holiday Experience and some occasional other holiday programming, but we are non-denominational, have no membership and aren’t tied to a single location.

At JCoOC, you always belong! You can make us your Jewish community destination or simply “try on” a program or two to see what ignites your “joy of Jewish!” Many of our participants are not currently affiliated with a formal synagogue, but others do belong to one or more local synagogues and also attend our programs as enriching “add-ons” to their existing Jewish involvement.

P.S. – Even though we don’t have a building, we can help you create a personalized lifecycle event (bar mitzvah, wedding, aufruf, baby naming, etc.) and provide or find a location designed to meet your/your family’s unique needs.

Is there a way to “join” JCoOC?

You can join our email list! It’s a great way to find out what we’re doing and choose a program that interests you. If you find something that is a good “fit,” there are always more opportunities to join us for ongoing programs and one-time events. You can even make us your primary Jewish community destination! 

And, if your experience steers you toward joining an OC synagogue or getting involved with a different Jewish organization, right on! We are here to connect you to OC Jewish life.

How do we fund our work?

The Jewish Collaborative of Orange County is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization. Because we have no membership and no dues, we are funded entirely by generous donations from people who care about innovative Judaism in Orange County (like you!), as well as by program-specific grants.

Our monthly donors are critical to maintaining the infrastructure that allows us to deliver high-quality, innovative programming to the communities who need us. Our annual and one-time donors help us to innovate and grow.

Support JCoOC with your meaningful donation today.

Why do we do what we do?

The Jewish Collaborative of Orange County envisions a future in which every person who seeks a meaningful connection to Judaism can discover what ignites their “joy of Jewish” and find one or more spiritual communities that meet their unique needs.

Questions, comments or suggestions?

We want to hear from you! Email joy@jewishcollaborativeoc.org or call 949.402.8004.

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