Friendship Circle MD D.C. aims to promote an inclusive Jewish community through lasting relationships. The nonprofit’s mission is “to provide every child with special needs in Montgomery County and D.C. the friendship, inclusion, and emotional support that they deserve,” and “to inspire and enrich our network of volunteers with the personal growth and fulfillment derived from selfless giving.”
The organization runs recreational, social, and educational programming in the greater Washington area, providing individuals with and without disabilities the opportunity to build friendships. Friends at Home, one of the nonprofit’s weekly programs, pairs high school volunteers with children with disabilities for weekly home visits. Torah Circle, a biweekly program, is a two-hour program where participants and teen buddies bond through Jewish-themed activities. Additionally, the nonprofit hosts Birthday Club monthly which brings friends together for fun parties to celebrate birthdays.
Friendship Circle MD D.C. is excited to expand its programming for elementary-aged children with the launch of Club Friendship. Through Club Friendship, kids grade one through five with and without disabilities engage in exciting programming to cultivate friendships. By participating in enjoyable activities alongside peers of all abilities, children foster acceptance and open-mindedness. The organization runs a variety of further programming which you can learn about on their website.
“Being a truly inclusive community is a fundamental Jewish value,” said Chana Kaplan, Director of Friendship Circle MD D.C. “We strive to build lifelong friendships through programming.”
The organization is inspired by Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, of blessed memory, who taught that none of us are complete unless all of us are included.
For more information on Friendship Circle MD D.C. or to get involved in the organization, please visit https://www.fcmd.org/