Friendship Circle of Wisconsin and the Coalition for Jewish Learning of Milwaukee Jewish Federation are offering an Inclusion Teen Training Program. The program educates and supports eighth to twelfth grade students to work with children and peers with disabilities.
The students learn how to assist in settings like synagogue schools, Friendship Circle, camp and youth groups, to fully create an inclusive environment, according to organizers. There are two upcoming installments of the program.
On Feb. 25, 3:30 p.m., there will be a program and Shabbat dinner to acknowledge Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion Month.
On March 13, 4 p.m., the program will feature a discussion about practical skills and communication for working with participants of all abilities.
“Teens are engaged in volunteer work in environments where they are interacting with peers with disabilities, and they don’t always know what to do, what to say or how to interact,” said CJL’s kesher inclusion specialist, Jennifer Saber, who is co-facilitating the program with Leah Stein, co-director of Friendship Circle.
“It’s a skill that needs to be developed, honed and learned,” Saber said.
The programming consists of interactive activities to apply the new skills that participants will learn during the discussions.
“There are kids in the community whose needs are not being met,” Saber said, “They could use extra support in order to get the most out of their Jewish education.”
The March 13 program will be held at Friendship Circle, 8649 N. Port Washington Road. RSVP at Fcwi.org/itt to attend.