OUR WAY TO HOST 12TH ANNUAL FAMILY SHABBATON IN WEST ORANGE, JUNE 10-12
Our Way | Jewish Disabilities Inclusion, for the Jewish Deaf and Hard of Hearing, will present its 12th Annual Our Way Family and Singles Shabbaton from Friday, June 10-Sunday, June 12 at Congregation Ahawas Achim B’nai Jacob and David (AABJ&D) in West Orange, 700 Pleasant Valley Way.
The Shabbaton is geared to all families with deaf and hard of hearing members, regardless of their mode of communication. Our Way’s program will feature guest speakers, delicious Shabbat meals, programs for children, teens and singles, as well as Motzei Shabbat entertainment of laser tag and go-carting. Shabbat services and meals will be enjoyed by all and interpreted into American Sign Language.
Our Way for the Jewish Deaf and Hard of Hearing is a division of the National Jewish Council for Disabilities (NJCD), an agency of the Orthodox Union, which provides social, educational, and recreational programs for Jewish youth and young adults who are deaf and hard of hearing.
The speakers at the Shabbaton will include NJCD Director Dr. Jeffrey Lichtman; Brooklyn-based psychologist Dr. Dennis Wilber, who works with deaf clients; licensed laugh therapist Yedidah Yasgur; and many more.
A special presentation will be given Friday night by Dr. Ronald Hoffman, Director of the Cochlear Implant Center at New York Eye and Ear Infirmary. Jennifer Rosner, mother of two deaf daughters and author of “If a Tree Falls: A Family’s Quest to Hear and be Heard,” will speak Sunday morning. Other topics of interest to be addressed during the weekend include “Laugh Therapy;” “Obstinate Children;” and “Early Intervention Strategies.”
Special workshops geared towards teenage interests include “Boredom,” and “Looking at Options Beyond High School.” Singles will also have special tracks, including speed dating.
Our Way Program Director Batya Jacob stated, “The Our Way Family and Singles Shabbaton is always the highlight of the year for our deaf and hard of hearing members. It is one of the few opportunities for this community to share in Shabbat, complete with tefillah that is interpreted into American Sign Language. It is an opportunity for parents to interface and share their triumphs and challenges that they face as well as for children to see deaf role models.”
A camp for younger children will be provided. The cost of the Shabbaton is highly subsidized by NJCD, on a first-come first-serve basis.
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