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Shabbat Smile

For my house shall be a house of prayer for all peoples. Isaiah 56:7 The great disability rights advocate, Rabbi Lynne Landsberg, z’l’ said, “We don’t welcome people with disabilities because they have disabilities. We welcome them because they are people.” Becoming a house of prayer for all peoples involves much more than an open [click to continue...]

This week’s Shabbat Smile is by Rachel Kunstadt, a mental health advocate and self-advocate in NYC. Her presentation at our Empowerment Training for Jewish Women with Disabilities – entitled “Choosing Life!” – included a musical performance of a song she co-wrote, addressing her agoraphobia. This past January, I became a Bat Mitzvah for the second time. Or [click to continue...]

Cori Ashkenazy was only two-and-a-half-years-old when he and his family made Aliyah, making Israel their new home. But it was only after their arrival to Israel that his parents became aware that their son was “different” than other kids his age: after a battery of tests and evaluations, Cori was diagnosed with autism. Undiscouraged, Cori’s family invested [click to continue...]

For this week’s Shabbat Smile, we are honored to share the poignant and personal story of disability advocate Guila Franklin Siegel, Associate Director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington (JCRC). The ER geriatrician was matter-of-fact. “Your father has probably had mini-strokes. Usually we do a CT Scan to confirm the diagnosis but given [click to continue...]

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