In celebration of Jewish Disability Awareness & Inclusion Month, Congregation Adath Shalom of Morris Plains held a Pre-Purim Palooza on February 26. Nearly 70 guests with special needs from Jewish Service for the Developmentally Disabled and volunteers took part in many Purim activities. The volunteers included 19 students from the vav and zayin classes at the synagogue’s religious school. A few of them have chosen ongoing involvement with the guests for their b’nai mitzvah projects.
Activities included baking hamantaschen, making groggers and masks, Purim games and crafts, and a Purim story. Afterward, guests and volunteers had pizza and ice cream.
This program grew out of the Adath Shalom Open Door Minyan, a monthly program that has been ongoing for more than eight years. Guests who have special needs receive aliyot and actively participate using a specially designed prayerbook that uses symbols that can be Velcroed for specific services. Everyone joins for a kiddush luncheon, followed by music and crafts. Upcoming dates for the minyan are April 1, May 6, and June 3 at 11 a.m.
For more information, email Bonnie Rosenthal at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (973) 361-5456.