The Choice to make a difference

August 30, 2019 by Community newsdesk
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was launched by Taryn and Andrew Boyarsky almost a year ago, as a platform to deliver innovative programs that benefit people in the Sydney Jewish community living with a disability.

The Foundation provides grants for organisations to create innovative projects that support, champion and enrich the lives of those who live with a disability, and in turn the whole community.

The Foundation has awarded four grants that embody its mission “to have a strong, inclusive community where every member can contribute by ensuring that a person with a disability has the same opportunity to reach their potential as anybody else”. These grants address gaps and enhance services in one or more of the following five key areas – education; vocation; housing; social; or respite for families.

The Sydney Jewish Museum today attracts visitors with diverse needs and abilities; however, they aim to make it even more accessible and inclusive, to be a global beacon of inclusivity. A generous grant from the Foundation has enabled the Museum to engage Ernst and Young Human Services to conduct research that will uncover any deficits, report on global best practices and make recommendations to ensure that the Museum understands, and where possible, caters to the needs of all its visitors.

In the youth sector, Maccabi’s All Abilities is focused on providing more sporting and recreational opportunities for people living with a disability. The Maccabi Dance Project is creating an inclusive dancing environment for those with special needs to dance with their peers.  Various styles of dance including Latin, jazz, tap and modern are being taught by professional teachers with these classes building pathways to engage able-bodied children to participate, dance and perform with diverse students.

Maccabi’sEducation through Experience program is teaching respect and understanding towards those with disabilities by facilitating immersive experiences that foster empathy both on and off the sports field. In recent months, a group of Moriah year 6 boys heard a personal story from a Paralympian, gaining an insight into his life and the difficulties that he faces. They then tackled the challenge of playing sport without using their legs in a game of wheelchair basketball, allowing them to start to comprehend the daily obstacles faced by people with a physical disability. This program is being rolled out to other schools in NSW.

Kesser Torah College(KTC) has received matched funding through the Foundation to enable the recruitment of specialist teachers in their high school to assist and support students who are experiencing difficulties accessing the mainstream curriculum. While KTC has had an excellent support mechanism in their primary school, this will be a first for their high school students and will greatly benefit their students and teachers.

Jewish Care’s JJOBS is the final program that has received funding thus far. It will initially be providing paid employment opportunities to people with a disability within the JCA’s 23 constituent organisations, before broadening its reach. The initiative will identify potential JJOBS candidates and match them up with vocational opportunities to suit their abilities, with ongoing support being provided.

JCA The Choice Foundation is calling on the community to bring their creative and innovative ideas that fall within their mission and to help give all people more choice in how they live their lives., Next round applications open in the first quarter of 2020, visit www.thechoicefoundation.org.au for more information and follow their journey on Facebook @thechoicefoundation and Instagram @the_choice_foundation.

 

 

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