Our community continues to evolve as a place that is welcoming, inclusive, and accessible to everyone by accommodating the needs of all, regardless of ability.
Below, you will find a wealth of inclusion resources—a virtual library of materials to connect individuals and their families to programs and services within our community. This content is a community effort. If you have any new programs and services the community should know about, we invite you to share this information by contacting us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 301-230-7200.
Only by engaging as a community can we develop the vision where we need to go next to become fully inclusive.
Understanding that Jew with disabilities and their families have needs that are universal to all families, the Greater Washington Jewish community organizations partner on the collective action to advance disability inclusion. Organizations listed below are marked with icons to indicate what age and stage their services are provided for.
Preschool and Early Years
Adults and Seniors
Caregivers, Parents and Siblings
JSSA is the health and social wellness agency that supports our neighbors through life’s consequential moments. Whether it is an adult with autism struggling to find a job, a family who is coping with a new learning disability diagnosis, or a teen dealing with behavioral challenges, JSSA’s team of caring experts listen with respect and ask questions to understand the whole family, so we can connect your needs and concerns with the people who can help. For more information about JSSA’s programs for children, adolescents, adults, and seniors with disabilities, please call 301-816-2633 to be connected to the help you need.
JFGH provides residential, transitioning youth and social programs. JFGH operates 20 homes/alternative living arrangements in Maryland and Virginia and has several in-home support programs. JFGH’s MOST™ Program is a one-year individualized program for transitioning into the adult community. The program focuses on self-sufficiency, community, and vocation. JFGH also runs a sibling network. For more information about individual services: 240-283-6000
Free high-quality expertly selected developmentally appropriate books and information about family-friendly ideas and events.; children can receive books that match their developmental level rather than their age. PJ Library books are through 8 years and PJ Our Way is for ages 9-11. For more information about individual services contact: Sarah Rabin Spira Sarah.RabinSpira@ShalomDC.org
All are welcome and encouraged to participate in a range of art, culture, and Jewish life programs. The after-school program, with 1:1 support, allows students in grades K-6 to socialize with friends, complete homework and stay active through a variety of supervised activities. The fully inclusive summer camp program for children with and without disabilities, ages 4-21, provides additional assistance to campers at no additional cost to the family. For more information about individual services contact: 301-881-0100
The EDCJCC is committed to providing young adults of all abilities opportunities to create meaningful and well-rounded lives through social engagement, vocational opportunities, fitness, drama and community service. A range of afterschool, family and camp programs including an inclusive community service camp where individuals can earn service-learning hours. Our newly renovated building is fully accessible. Theater J provides assistive listening devices for all performances and open captioning for select performances. Wheelchair and companion seats are available in the ADA-accessible theater. JxJ has headsets available to amplify sound, which can be requested ahead of time. Films that have closed captioning will be advertised as such. The wheelchair accessible theater has special seating available in the first row. For more information about individual services contact: (202) 777-276
Pozez JCCNV programs are inclusive and open to everyone. There is a resource specialist on staff and shadows and special accommodations are available. Social skills classes for 4-15-year old and Jclub, a social program for children in grades 5-8. Going Places: Teens, Young Adults, and Adults, a social club for individuals with high-functioning autism. Special events such as inclusive Bingo night and Holiday Fundraiser: Showcasing the Arts & Gifts of Individuals living with disabilities and/or mental illness. Resources for parents. Cooking classes for children and adults. Adaptive sports and fitness for children and adults. An inclusive summer camp program, Camp Kadima (social skills therapy camp) and Camp Tikvah (life skills). Pozez JCC partners with local organizations to bring a wide range of educational workshops including financial and employment topics. Travel program for adults. Pozez JCC hosts ReelAbilities Film Festival dedicated to promoting awareness and appreciation of the lives, stories and artistic expressions of people with disabilities. 703-537-3031
Atzma’im program, inclusion program, provides support for a range of campers with disabilities, including campers with autism, developmental, physical, and learning disabilities, so all can be involved and included in camp life. Campers in the vocational training program receive community service volunteer hours for the work they do at camp. For more information about individual services contact: email@example.com or 301-468-2267
Torah Circle and Teen Scene bi-monthly social/Judaic programs, monthly Birthday Club, Holiday programs and a Friends at Home program. All programs provide opportunities for children/teens with special needs and neuro-typical children/teens to socialize together. The Yad Program is a monthly gathering at different venues where individuals with disabilities socialize with young professionals in an interesting setting.
The Sunflower Bakery Pastry Arts Training Program provides a 26-week pastry arts training with professional chefs as well as supervised internship experience to adults with learning differences. Café Sunflower offers 3 months employment training in customer service and barista training with 6 months employment for students who are able to work independently, along with an 8-week high school internship program. The After-School Teen Exposure Program and the Summer Teen Exposure Program, approved under the Pre-Employment Transition Services in Maryland, provide teens with an introduction to working in a professional bakery. Sunflower’s Bar/Bat Mitzvah Seeds Program teaches boys and girls preparing to become a bar or bat mitzvah about the role that Sunflower Bakery plays in the community.
Jewish Council for the Aging (JCA)
Transportation information & referral for seniors and adults with disabilities, Kensington Club, social day clubs for individuals with early-stage memory loss; Misler, a medical adult day center; Senior Helpline providing free information about senior services within the Greater Washington DC area including housing, home care, recreation; SHIP providing help understanding Medicare. (updated 10/7 by Sarah Fought) For more information about individual services: 301-255-4200
WSJD serves the cultural, spiritual, social and educational needs of the Jewish deaf and heard of hearing community and promotes and advocates deaf awareness among the greater Jewish community including synagogues, community agencies, and schools.
Matan educates Jewish leaders, educators, and communities, empowering them to create learning environments supportive of children with special needs, through training Institutes and consultations. Matan also created free online holiday resources, lesson plans, webinars, and divrei torah initiative.
Bikur Cholim translates to “visiting the sick” and provides support for those facing medical related challenges. BCGW supports and maintains kosher pantries at area hospitals and provides ongoing community education to promote awareness of the mitzvah of Bikur Cholim. BCGW maintains a Jewish home and apartment for patients and their families seeking treatment form NIH and area hospitals. BCGW provides free short-term loans of medical equipment to the local Jewish community or those visiting from out of town.
Chai Lifeline is a non-profit organization dedicated to meeting the non-medical needs of seriously ill children, their families, and communities. Our mission is to enhance lives through programs and services that offer friendship, good times, great memories, and social and emotional support. For more information contact Esti Schonbrun, firstname.lastname@example.org or 410-205-2085
Weekly Shabbat Smiles amplifies the work of Jews with and without disabilities serving the disability community. Online resources include High Holiday guide and Synagogue Inclusion Toolkit. Respectability’s National Leadership Program is paid fellowship and includes a Jewish Inclusion fellow.
“Judaism as a Program for Living Well” initiative aims to generate a broader response to challenges of addiction and mental health recovery in our Jewish community. It is an effort to nurture a caring and inclusive community through the Federation’s role of convener, thought leader and catalyst for collaboration.
Advancing the ideal of disability inclusion and strengthening our community; connecting individuals and families to programs and services and providing the tools to raise awareness and advocate for the rights of individuals with disabilities. Includes an event page, community resources, individual resources, inclusion in the workplace and inclusion stories.
The Homeowner Accessibility Services helps homeowners make modifications such as hand/grab bar installation, ramps (Ramp It Up!) and installations of approved appliances. Yachad also has a program for renovation concerning disabilities such as asthma or allergies which can include removal and replacement of flooring.
Check out travel programs, youth groups, and social action opportunities. We have noted which programs have inclusion programs and/or provide accommodations