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This is an initiative bringing together interfaith leaders from across the Greater Boston area to promote inclusion in all types of religious communities. Building networks and sharing resources, clergy and laypeople come together to learn best practices and get motivated to make the inclusion of people with disabilities a top priority in their churches, synagogues, mosques, and temples.
A biannual conference of international scope, bringing 1,000 people from around the world and across sectors to focus on inclusion in all facets of life. Attendees, speakers, and volunteers will come together to learn, network, exchange best practices, and get motivated to promote full inclusion in all aspects of life. In 2017 the content will include over 15 panels and plenaries, on the topics of education, healthcare, housing, government services, policy, advocacy, social justice, the arts, technology, employment, and more. www.inclusion2017.org
Ruderman Social Justice in Disability Scholars Program: In 2013, RFF partnered with the Lurie Institute for Disability Policy at Brandeis University. This program develops leadership capacity for Brandeis undergraduates with an interest in disability issues. Participants complete an internship at a disability organization, take courses in Disability Policy, and work with Brandeis faculty to complete a research project related to disability and social justice. For more information, please visit: http://heller.brandeis.edu/letter/index.html
Kulanu Circle Hebrew School: In line with its deep commitment to inclusive Jewish education, the Ruderman Family Foundation has partnered with the Friendship Circle of Miami to support Kulanu Circle Hebrew school. Kulanu Circle is the only inclusion-based Sunday Hebrew school currently meeting the needs of Jewish children with disabilities in Miami. The Friendship Circle offers Jewish education to all children regardless of ability, providing Bar Mitzvah education and training so that all children who want to, and are eligible to become a Bar Mitzvah, are able to participate. For more information about Kulanu Circle, please go to: http://www.friendshipcirclemiami.org/templates/youth/article_cdo/aid/1950693/jewish/The-Kulanu-Circle-at-the-Chabad-of-Kendall-Pinecrest.htm
Ruderman Synagogue Inclusion Project: The Ruderman Synagogue Inclusion Project (RSIP) is a partnership between CJP and the Ruderman Family Foundation to support synagogues. Creating communities where people of all abilities are valued equally and participate fully. RSIP works together with 6-8 Partners and 6-8 Affiliate synagogues from all Jewish denominations every year. Growing the cohort of inclusive synagogues to reach a critical mass that can influence and revolutionize religious life in the entire CJP catchment area. https://www.cjp.org/our-work/caring-social-justice/ruderman-synagogue-inclusion-project
MER Inclusion Scholarship Fund: In partnership with CJP and Gateways: Access to Jewish Education, the MER Scholarship helps to defray the cost of both school-based and ancillary services for day school students with disabilities and special needs, particularly those who require financial aid. The goal of the scholarship is to attract and retain students with disabilities in Jewish day schools, transforming the face of inclusion in Jewish education. https://www.cjp.org/our-work/jewish-learning/jewish-day-schools/morton-e-ruderman-inclusion-scholarship-fund
Inclusive Mechinot: The Ruderman Family Foundation partners with the Joint Council of Mechinot (Pre-Military Leadership Academies) to ensure the inclusion of young people with disabilities in pre-military programs throughout Israel. We believe that in order to have the best Israeli civic and social leadership tomorrow, all parts of Israeli society, including the IDF, must work to cultivate leaders today. The full inclusion of individuals with disabilities at the mechinot, which not only prepare students for military service but also help them grow as civic leaders, requires extensive and intensive change, including staff training, structural modifications, procurement of equipment, and a new approach to the education of mechina students, as well as efforts to achieve attitudinal change within society.
The Ruderman Family Foundation supports the Council’s programs and assists alumni of mechinotto obtain fitting military assignments and to find their places in civilian life after their service. The program is a collaboration between the Ruderman Family Foundation, the Government of Israel and JDC- Ashalim and the Joint Council of Mechinot. To learn more visit http://mechinot.org.il/en-us/
TOM: Tikkun Olam Makers: TOM: Tikkun Olam Makers hosted TOM: Israel 2017 a 72-hour Makeathon at the Technion Institute in Haifa in partnership with the Ruderman Family Foundation. The Makeathon (a marathon of innovation and creation) brought together over 160 ‘Makers’ – engineers, designers, innovators and problem solvers – from the United States, Canada, England, China, India, Sri Lanka and Israel, to work together with 20 people with disabilities to develop technological solutions for everyday challenges. In addition to being the largest Makeathon in world history, TOM:Israel 2017 was the first international Makeathon of the growing global movement that spans Israel, the United States, Canada, Latin America, Australia, and Vietnam. Throughout the 3-day event in Haifa, teams of technologists, designers, therapists, and people with disabilities addressed 17 challenges of people living with disabilities, working hand-in-hand to create prototype solutions. To learn more visit http://tomglobal.org
RampUp: The Ruderman Family Foundation has partnered with JDC-TEVET’s RampUp, a program that has been helping Israelis with disabilities work and fulfills their real potential since 2013. RampUp offers a comprehensive and holistic set of services, including individual and group employment workshops, soft skills training, personal career counseling, and more — all with sensitivity towards the client’s disability. RampUp also works with local employers to create a bridge between participants and potential positions and refers participants to companies at no cost.
Home for Special Families in Israel: The Ruderman Family Foundation partners with Kesher, the Home for Special Families in Israel, on three programs. The first, “Parents Building Community”, which fosters a sense of solidarity among families of children with special needs, functions both as a support group and a lobbying body aimed at impacting local policy surrounding disabilities. The second initiative, “National Network of Parent-Led Communities” is an extension of Parents Building Community. Parents from all Kesher communities meet six times a year to address relevant topics such as lobbying, fundraising, and training for community facilitators. Finally, the “National Sibling Network” unites and provides a support group for young adults who have siblings with disabilities. The sibling community is also part of the Foundation’s LINK20 network.
Autism Care Collaborative Project: The Autism Care Collaborative Project (ACCP) is building capacity across Massachusetts General Hospital to address the health care needs of individuals with autism across their lifespan. Mass. General is working to ensure its healthcare services are fully accessible and responsive to the needs of individuals with autism and to develop a pilot program as a model for hospitals and other health care providers nationally. Through a partnership with the Ruderman Family Foundation, this project has resulted in informational videos and in-person training for hospital staff. As well as expanded patient Behavior Support Plans and in-take questionnaires, and the hiring of the Autism Navigator, who is directly involved in the care of patients with autism and their families. To learn more about this program, please go to: http://www.massgeneral.org/children/services/treatmentprograms.aspx?id=1614
EsekShaveh – Equal Business: Equal Business is an innovative program, which aims to promote professional and higher education employment of people with disabilities in the business sector. Equal Business guides employers and human resource directors of large companies in implementing regulations to expand employee rights for people with disabilities. The program operates in three different circles. 1.) Work with organizations, providing knowledge and tools for recruiting and employing people with disabilities. 2.) Building a network of committed employers. 3.) Extensive activity in public discourse to increase awareness of the importance of employing people with disabilities in quality and professional employment. Equal Business is a tri-sector collaboration of the Ministry of Labor and Welfare, Meitav Dash, JDC- Tevet, and the Ruderman Family Foundation.
Inclusion Initiative: In 2015, the Ruderman Family Foundation partnered with the National Ramah Commission to promote inclusion within Ramah camps across the country. This initiative supports vocational education programming, including training of camp staff, at four Ramah overnight camps. Through the partnership, Ramah has also established new programs at two additional Ramah overnight camps. These programs provide a range of camping experiences to children with diverse disabilities.
Youth Engagement: The Ruderman Family Foundation partnered with New England Yachad in 2013 to expand inclusive volunteer leadership opportunities for youth. This program includes the creation of Yachad high school clubs, a youth leadership board, and a Jewish Youth Group network. Participants with and without disabilities attend shabbatons, leadership trainings and club meetings. To learn more about upcoming events and previous events, please visit: https://www.yachad.org/newengland
The Morton E. Ruderman Memorial Lecture Series and Ruderman Scholarship In Jewish Studies: The Ruderman Family Foundation is proud to work with Northeastern University on two important initiatives to support its Jewish Studies program: The Morton E. Ruderman Memorial Lecture Series and the Ruderman Scholarship in Jewish Studies. The lecture series offers a remarkable opportunity for Jewish Studies students, and the community at large, to engage with a famous, world-class leader through a public talk. As part of the Ruderman Scholarship in Jewish Studies, the Jewish Studies program holds a competition for naming the Ruderman scholar(s) and an award goes to one or two students of Jewish Studies each year. This competition incentivizes students to declare a minor in Jewish Studies, brings visibility to the program, and rewards the finest students. Both the Lectureship and Scholarship programs honor the memory of Northeastern alumnus Morton E. Ruderman, and his commitment to teaching about Jews and Judaism at Northeastern, and to bringing visibility and added prestige to the Jewish Studies program. For more information about these programs, please go to the Northeastern Jewish Studies website at: https://www.northeastern.edu/cssh/jewishstudies
Municipal Accessibility Index: The 2016 Municipal Accessibility Index is an initiative of the partnership between the Ruderman Family Foundation and the Ted Arison Family Foundation. The index raises the issue of inclusion of people with disabilities in the community in public discourse, increases awareness of rights for people with disabilities among the general population, and motivates local city authorities to improve residents’ quality of life. The accessibility index is based on the findings of two studies conducted by the Institute for Applied Psychology at IDC Herzliya and DAS International Institute. The studies investigated the degree of accessibility of services, public attitudes, and social involvement of people with disabilities in twenty cities around Israel. To learn more visit http://www.negishut.co/
USCJ Ruderman Inclusion Action Community: The Ruderman Family Foundation partnered with the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism in 2015 to establish the USCJ Ruderman Inclusion Action Community, which aims to transform Conservative congregations into truly inclusive communities for people with disabilities. Each year, up to 20 congregations from across North America receive expertise and consulting from the USCJ as they develop comprehensive visions and action plans on inclusion. For more information, please visit https://uscj.org/leadership/ruderman-inclusion-action-community#about
Jewish Leadership Institute on Disabilities and Inclusion: In 2015, RFF partnered with the National Leadership Consortium on Developmental Disabilities to offer the Jewish Leadership Institute on Disabilities and Inclusion. This Institute enables leaders from Jewish organizations across the country to advance the agenda of inclusion throughout their organizations. Participants learn from the renowned faculty of national experts on disability inclusion and supports. They also gain a solid understanding of the value of inclusion and build a network of some of the most influential leaders in the field. For more information, please visit: http://www.nlcdd.org/jli.html