Yachad, Camp Mesorah Announce New Camper and Vocational Programs for Summer 2011

12 May 2011


Yachad and Camp Mesorah announce their new joint venture “The Yachad At Mesorah Camper and Vocational Programs” in which high-functioning individuals with special needs are given educational experiences within full Inclusion in the camp. These two programs will take place simultaneously, under the leadership of Michelle Prus, Assistant Program Director of New York Yachad, Rayim Division, for participants ages 26 and older. Camp Mesorah is located in Guilford, NY near Binghamton.

“Yachad,” the flagship program of the Orthodox Union’s National Jewish Council for Disabilities (NJCD), provides unique social, educational and recreational programs for individuals with learning, developmental and physical disabilities.

According to Dr. Jeffrey Lichtman, National Director of Yachad/NJCD, “Every summer hundreds of Yachad members experience fun, friendship and personal growth in Inclusive camp settings at amazing camps like Camp Nesher. In turn, those Yachad members interact with and positively affect thousands of campers who attend camp programs at Morasha, Nesher, Lavi and Moshava. This summer we are so very excited to now have the opportunity to impact hundreds of additional mainstream campers and staff at Camp Mesorah. Inclusion benefits everyone and happens in a special, almost magical way in settings like these wonderful camps.”

The vocational program is for individuals ages 22-30 for both summer sessions, beginning in June. With the guidance of a job coach, they will be given jobs based upon interest and skill level such as office work; kitchen staff; and assisting within specialty fields such as arts and crafts or sports. The participant will be fully included as a camp staff member in all staff activities. In addition, Yachad will provide social programming for all staff.

The camper program for children with moderate special needs in grades 3-10 will take place during the camp’s second session beginning in late July. Campers will be placed in a typical, mainstream bunk, together with a shadow, as a full member of that bunk.

According to Nechama Braun, Yachad Summer Programs Administrator, “Continuing in the quality successful programming run by Yachad at Camps Morasha, Nesher, Moshava, and Lavi, we will look at each camper’s goals and make it a fun and meaningful educational experience for each of them. This is another unique opportunity provided by Yachad aiming to facilitate full Inclusion within the broad Jewish community.”

Joseph Stansky, Director of Camp Mesorah, declared, “Camp Mesorah is proud and honored to partner with Yachad. Both Yachad participants and Mesorah campers are sure to benefit from this alliance.”

Limited scholarship is available on a first-come first-serve basis.

For further information and registration, contact Nechama Braun at 212-613-8369 or {encode=”mailto:braunn@ou.org” title=”braunn@ou.org”}.