Chicago Yachad Presents Disabilities Series, 2/17-18
Chicago Yachad will present two distinguished national leaders of disabilities awareness within the greater Jewish community, Yachad National Chairman Aaron Kinderleher of New York, and Rabbi Yehoshua Hoffman of Denver, for a special presentation series, “Why Can’t We See Better?” They will speak Friday, February 17-Saturday, February 18 as a highlight of Yachad’s North American Inclusion Month (NAIM), which takes place nationally throughout February.
NAIM is an initiative of the Orthodox Union’s Yachad | Jewish Disabilities Inclusion/the National Jewish Council for Disabilities (NJCD) designated to raise awareness and to develop sensitivity of what it means for those who live with disabilities, and how to Include them within the larger Jewish community.
Efrem Popel, Director of Chicago Yachad, shared, "We are so lucky as a community to have the opportunity to hear such dynamic, energetic speakers as Aaron Kinderlehrer and Rabbi Hoffman who have real life experiences, stories to tell, and lessons to help teach us all to be more inclusive in all areas of Jewish life."
After Kabbalat Shabbat, Aaron Kinderleher will speak at Congregation Sha’arei Tzedek Mishkan Yair in West Rogers Park, 2832 Touhy Avenue. Rabbi Hoffman will speak at a private home on Friday night as part of an Oneg Shabbat in West Rogers Park. Shabbat morning, Mr. Kinderleher will speak at Bais Chaim Dovid (Bais Medrash of Lincolnwood), 3460 West Devon. He will also speak at a special seudat shlishit at Congregation Adas Yeshurun, 3050 West Touhy Avenue. Shabbat activities are sponsored by Shimmy and Shoni Braun.
A city-wide melave malka beginning at 9:00 p.m. Saturday night will feature Rabbi Hoffman at Congregation Or Torah, 3800 Dempster Street in Skokie. The free event is sponsored by Ami and Aviva Robinson.
Aaron Kinderlehrer brings a unique perspective on the joys and struggles of raising a child with a disability. He, and his wife, Toby, have four children, including their 26-year-old son with Down Syndrome, Baruch. He additionally serves at National Vice President and a member of the Executive committee of the Orthodox Union; the Vice President of Otsar, programs and services for Jewish children and adults with developmental disabilities; and a “Founders Wall” Supporter of Camp HASC, a summer camp for mentally and physically handicapped children and adults in upstate New York. He is a Real Estate Partner at New York’s Wilk Auslander LLP law firm.
Rabbi Hoffman spent his youth hiking in the mountains of Colorado, and his early adulthood studying at Yeshivas Torah Ore, and the Mir Yeshiva in Jerusalem. Always seeking adventure, whether in the outdoors or in the intellectual and spiritual realms, Rabbi Hoffman began the greatest adventure of all after a traumatic accident brought him back to Denver as a quadriplegic four years ago. Today, Rabbi Hoffman continues his Torah studies at Yeshiva Toras Chaim in Denver, in addition to teaching. Additionally, he speaks about his experience, and the perspective he has gained from it.
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