OUR WAY ANNOUNCES LEARN AND LIVING PROGRAM, TRIP TO ISRAEL
Our Way, the National Jewish Council for Disabilities (NJCD) program for the deaf and hard of hearing, announces its newest Torah and Israeli culture learning program, Tanach Achshav: Learning and Living. The study program culminates in a trip to Israel. NJCD is an agency of the Orthodox Union.
“Israel today is at the core of Jewish experience for each and every Jew,” declared Dr. Jeffrey Lichtman, National Director of NJCD. “As such, every Jew, regardless of disability, should have the opportunity to experience our beloved homeland. NJCD is proud to make this possible for our fellow Jews who are deaf and hard of hearing.”
Classes will be held once a month on various aspects of Jewish and Israeli life; at the same time, participants are encouraged to put aside six dollars a day for 18 months. At the end of that period, participants will have saved enough to cover most of the trip expenses to be able to experience and better appreciate all that they have been learning about in the classes. The program is scheduled to begin September 2010 and the trip with take place January 2012. Our Way is looking for at least 20 participants to make this trip a reality.
Classes taught by deaf rabbis and hearing individuals associated with Our Way will be offered using sign language in a series of video conferences once a month. Topics of discussion will include a range of Jewish history, culture, and daily life: prayer, the history of Israel, various books of the Prophets and the Five Books of Moses, relationships between Jews and Arabs, why we should have a connection with Israel, etc.
“The deaf community is small; the Jewish deaf community is tiny. We are excited to offer this amazing opportunity as we tailor the trip around their needs and interests,” declared Batya Jacob, National Program Director of Our Way. They will also have the opportunity to connect with members of the Israeli deaf Jewish community in Israel while touring and on Shabbat.
The trip to Israel will include sign language interpreters and oral interpreters, depending on the needs of the participants. The program is open Jews of all backgrounds and observances, run under the guidelines of the OU; singles, young couples and families are all welcome. Participants will have a special account set up with Our Way to keep track of their funds each month.
“Not in a million years did I think I’d have an opportunity to visit Israel,” declared Isamar Rhodes, of Cleveland, a member of Our Way who has already signed up for the experience.
To register and for more information, contact Batya Jacob at 212.613.8127 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Information can also be found by joining the Facebook group “Our Way – Jewish Deaf & Hard of Hearing.”