Posts tagged Voc-Ed
New and Expanded Tikvah Programs for Campers with Disabilities

This past April, the 112 riders, hikers, and volunteers on the Ramah Israel Bike Ride and Hiking Trip raised more than $540,000 to benefit Ramah Tikvah programs for children, teens, and young adults with disabilities. During summer 2019, a total of 423 individuals will participate in Tikvah-affiliated programs. It is a privilege to share with you this report on this summer's plans for how Ramah camps will be using the Tikvah funds raised on the ride/hike, both 1) programmatically and 2) for the financial support of families with children with disabilities who also have financial constraints.

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This Jewish Camp Is Teaching Teens With Special Needs How To Be Independent

Atzmayim, the Hebrew word for “independent,” is an extension of Tikvah, Ramah’s program for campers on the autism spectrum or who have other social or learning challenges. All Atzmayim participants are high school graduates between ages 18 and 23, and they all work three hours a day, five days a week, in the town of Eagle River, about 15 minutes from Camp Ramah in Wisconsin.

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Inclusion in the Workplace Too

Dozens of articles online and in print publications proudly and enthusiastically note that February is Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion Month (JDAIM). JDAIM, marked by agencies and organizations throughout the Jewish world, is described as “a unified effort among Jewish organizations worldwide to raise awareness and foster inclusion of people with disabilities and their families in Jewish communities worldwide.”

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Ramah Tikvah Programs: New Initiatives and Year-Round Activities

Since the first Ramah Tikvah program opened in 1970, the Ramah Camping Movement has continued to be a pioneer in the inclusion of Jewish campers with disabilities. Tikvah programs now operate in all Ramah camps across North America, offering the inspirational Ramah experience to Jewish children, teens, and young adults with learning, developmental, cognitive, and social disabilities.

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Family pays tribute to Tikvah program

For the past five years, 20-year-old Adam Berzin of Ramsey has spent his summers at Camp Ramah Wisconsin, at the camp’s Tikvah program.

Created more than 40 years ago and offered at nine Ramah camps in the United States and Canada, Tikvah welcomes children, teens, and young adults with a wide range of learning, developmental, cognitive, and social disabilities, “enhancing Jewish identity and teaching Jewish values in a supportive, inclusive, fun environment,” according to its website.

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Ramah’s special needs programs turn a camp into a home

Like many children and teenagers, Michael Rosenbaum of Los Feliz sees going to summer camp as a highlight of his year.

He relishes the outdoor activities, cooking classes, swimming, dancing and games at Camp Ramah in Ojai. He enjoys connecting with his Jewish heritage through daily celebrations and songs, and he especially loves seeing his camp friends from previous years. And, since last summer, the 18-year-old has been thrilled at the opportunity to work at the camp as a cooking teacher’s assistant.

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