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JCC MidWestchester

Children & Teens

Home » Children & Teens » Special Needs » Special Needs Enrichment Services Programming

Special Needs Enrichment Services Programming

Mission

To provide special needs enrichment programs that are appropriate for children with ADHD, speech/language delays, Learning Disabilities, Asperger’s Syndrome, ASD or any other developmental disabilities.  Our programs also aim at creating the most inclusive environment possible and therefore are open to all. This is a non-sectarian program that provides scholarships and 1:1 assistants whenever possible. All programs support each child’s individualized needs and all programs are open to all abilities and the general public.

Approach

A combination of teamwork, encouragement, compassion, respect and assumption of ability enable the success of our special needs enrichment programs. With small groups, in a warm nurturing atmosphere, your child will be guided to assist the development of physical,  pragmatic communication and social skills. Self-esteem will be cultivated, creativity will be encouraged and friendships will be developed. Our enrichment staff includes a team of dedicated leaders who often work in special needs programs within local school districts during the weekdays. Some of our programs are partially supported through a family support services grant (FSS) from  NY OPWDD.  Scholarships are available based on a sliding scale and income verification.

Special Needs Enrichment Programs 

  • Circle of Friends (adult socialization group)
  • Saturday Night Social (teen socialization program)
  • SibConnection (siblings of kids with special needs)
  • Sunday/Funday (recreational, socialization program ages 3-21)
  • Tai Chi (ages 8+)
  • Teen Volunteering & Community Service

Contact Mara Roberge at robergem@jccmw.org for detailed information on all above programs

Saturday Night Social (SNS)

A teen-only social experience running 1 Saturday night a month.  Program includes a community dinner and an evening social activity or social action project. 
Ages 12-21, Saturdays, 6:30pm-8pm

Final Winter/Spring 2022 program date: 5/14/22

Fall 2022 program dates:  9/24/22, 10/29/22, 11/19/22 & 12/10/22

Winter/Spring 2023: 1/21/23, 2/11/23, 3/18/23, 4/22/23 & 5/20/23

Sunday/Funday

Offered for two sessions during the school year, plus a shorter summer session, this all-inclusive social skills development program is carried out through art, music, gymnastics, active play, social skills and technology. Grouped primarily by age, participants receive individualized attention from group leaders, specialist instructors, and devoted teen volunteers. This program is open to the entire community regardless of disability status.
Ask about our  complimentary ‘trial’ class and see if our program is a good fit for your child. Ages 3-21, Sundays, 9am-12pm

***New this summer! Creative movement instruction will be added to Sunday/Funday.  This project is made possible with funds from the Statewide Community Regrants Program, a regrant program of the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature and administered by ArtsWestchester. www.artswestchester.org***

Summer 2022 program dates: 7/10/22, 7/17/22, 7/24/22, 7/31/22, 8/7/22 & 8/14/22

Fall 2022 program dates:  9/18/22, 9/25/22, 10/2/22, 10/23/22, 10/30/22, 11/6/22, 11/13/22, 11/20/22, 12/4/22 & 12/11/22 

Winter/Spring 2023 program dates: 1/8/23, 1/22/23, 1/29/23, 2/5/23, 2/12/23, 3/5/23, 3/12/23, 3/19/23, 3/26/23, 4/16/23, 4/23/23, 4/30/23, 5/7/23 & 5/21/23 

Tai Chi – Parent/Caregiver/Sibling & Child Class

Offered for two sessions and taught by a certified Tai Chi Instructor, this program offers the unique opportunity for participation by both the participant and their parent/caregiver or sibling.  Participants and their partners will be introduced to the basic tenets of Tai Chi, proven to improve balance, flexibility, muscle strength, alleviate stress/anxiety, symptoms of asthma and increase one’s energy level.

Limit of 6 participants. Ages 8-21, Sundays, 12pm-12:45pm

Fall 2022 program dates:  9/18/22, 9/25/22, 10/2/22, 10/23/22, 10/30/22, 11/6/22, 11/13/22, 11/20/22, 12/4/22 & 12/11/22 

Winter/Spring 2023 program dates: 1/8/23, 1/22/23, 1/29/23, 2/5/23, 2/12/23, 3/5/23, 3/12/23, 3/19/23, 3/26/23, 4/16/23, 4/23/23, 4/30/23, 5/7/23 & 5/21/23 

SibConnection

A support group for children and adolescents coping with issues related to having a sibling with a developmental disability. Participants can share, explore feelings, and learn in a safe and supportive environment.
Wednesdays, 4:30-5:30pm
Ages 6-12 

Fall 2022 program dates: 9/21/22, 9/28/22, 10/12/22, 10/19/22, 10/26/22, 11/2/22, 11/9/22, 11/16/22, 11/30/22 & 12/7/22 

Winter/Spring 2023: 1/11/23, 1/18/23, 1/25/23, 1/1/23, 2/8/23, 2/15/23, 3/1/23, 3/8/23, 3/15/23, 3/22/23, 3/29/23, 4/19/23, 4/26/23, 5/3/23, 5/10/23 &  5/17/23 

SibConnection Teens

A support group for teens coping with issues related to having a sibling with a developmental disability. Participants can share, explore feelings, and learn in a safe and supportive environment.
Tuesdays, 4:00-5:00pm
Ages 12-16

Fall 2022 program dates: 9/20/22, 10/4/22, 10/25/22,  11/1/22, 11/8/22, 11/15/22, 11/22/22, 11/29/22, 12/6/22 & 12/13/22

Winter/Spring 2023: 1/10/23, 1/17/23, 1/24/23, 1/31/23, 2/7/23, 2/14/23, 2/28/23, 3/7/23, 3/14/23, 3/21/23, 3/28/23, 4/11/23, 4/18/23, 4/25/23, 5/2/23 & 5/9/23

Circle of Friends

This group provides a venue for individuals 20 and older who identify themselves as having special needs to get together and enjoy social activities of the group’s choice. They gather on a regular basis once a month to enrich their social lives by planning activities based on mutual interests. Participants must live outside of a residential facility and be qualified with OPWDD. Ages 20+

Summer & Fall 2022: Theater program focus in collaboration with Sandbox Theater

***This project is made possible with funds from the Statewide Community Regrants Program, a regrant program of the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature and administered by ArtsWestchester. www.artswestchester.org***

Interested? Email Mara Roberge, robergem@jccmw.org

Teen Volunteering and Community Service

Volunteers must commit to participating from September – June.  Times/days vary based on on program of interest.  Sunday/Funday volunteers must commit for a total of 26 Sundays, 8:30am-12pm (see annual schedule).  Saturday Night Social volunteers must commit for a total of 10 Saturdays, 6pm-8pm (see annual schedule).

Buddy Connect: A new teen volunteer program which aims to foster genuine connections and provide social engagement through one to one connections, between mentor teen volunteers and youth with special needs.  Youth of all ages and abilities are welcome to register to find a volunteer teen mentor that can come to your home, at a mutually agreed upon weekly day/time (1x/month). Teen volunteers interested in joining this unique program can register at Buddy Connect Volunteer Registration.  JCCMW requires waivers for this program since JCCMW cannot supervise the teens while in your home. Adult supervision required while teen volunteers are present and engaging with the youth participants. The buddy connection typically runs 30-60 minutes and is centered around the interests of the participant.

We offer 12 and 13 year olds a unique community service experience that can serve as a B’nei Mitzvah project by doing volunteer work through our Special Needs Enrichment Services department programming.  In addition, high school students may commit as a volunteer to meet their community service requirements while enhancing their college resumes. All volunteers are required to commit to the entire program year  of their chosen program dates to ensure consistency for our participants.

Through a grant made possible by the Z.B. & J.E. Butler Foundation, selected teen volunteers will participate in  CLASSP, a program coordinated with other NY agencies. High School CLASSP (Consortia for Learning And Service to Special Populations) is an internship and academic course that requires participation in a fieldwork experience and college-level coursework. During the fieldwork portion of the course, students complete a supervised internship working directly with children that have special needs, disabilities and/or are considered to be in an “at risk” population. During the academic portion of the course, students will participate in 8 virtual classes and one conference for a total of 15 hours in-class hours .  They will actively participate in class activities, maintain a reflection journal, participate in on-line discussions with peers, complete required readings and learning tasks, and complete one larger assignment. Students must have a minimum of one year prior volunteer experience in JCCMW’s Sunday/Funday program and must complete a total of 100 hours of field work and all course work hours to be eligible for the recommended college credit

Please reach out to join in supporting our community and the Jewish value of Tikkun Olam (repair of the world).  Please follow this link to register as a volunteer and let us know of your interests and availability.  Background checks may be required depending on the department selected for volunteering.  Our Community Engagement Director will reach out upon receipt of your registration.

Volunteer Inquiry Process

  1. Potential volunteer completes the registration form.
  2. JCCMW Community Engagement Director reaches out via email to provide the volunteer application form and the JCCMW’s volunteer manual, and to schedule a zoom informational meeting to learn about your interests, availability & preferences
  3. Informational zoom meeting & submission of volunteer application form.  Click here for the application form.
  4. Volunteer placement (departments may have additional required paperwork)

For more information email Mara Roberge at robergem@jccmw.org

Teen Social Action at JCCMW

The JCC provides Westchester teens with numerous volunteer programs that provide professional skill building while enhancing leadership qualities. Through community service and our volunteer programs, teens can live the Jewish value of Tikkun Olam (Repairing the World). From helping in a specific program, department or executing a social action project, there are countless ways to get involved and make a difference in our Westchester community!

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”  

Margaret Mead
Teens can serve as volunteers in special needs, after school program or other enrichment departments and gain from the experience of interacting and supporting our child participants by mentoring, engaging in activities and building relationships. Volunteers often describe the experience as, “life changing” and many teens have found their experiences helpful in determining the directions they would like to take with their future professional careers.