Close

Combined Testimonials Page

Designed Testimonials

Why Shutaf is Great

Thank you, Marci, for your magic... You diffused a challenging situation with skill, charm and sensitivity. We are grateful to you, Yoni and the Shutaf staff. Benny came home happy and glad that he stayed.

MJ and Barry Kanner

Shutaf Parent

During camp… I got to know a new Itai. I felt less alone, I felt a sense of family.

Ilana Haviva

mother of Shutaf camper, Itai

 

Ilana Havivamother of Shutaf camper, Itai

Inclusion is not about the percentages of people with disabilities versus those without disabilities. True inclusion is creating a space where every person has a place within the group. We are all interdependent. I am pleased to observe that Shutaf shares these values and implements them at every level of its programming.

Prof. Arie Rimmerman

Faculty of Social Welfare & Health Sciences, Haifa University, author of Social Inclusion of People with Disabilities: National and International Perspectives, 2013, Cambridge University Press

Shutaf is extraordinary in that it serves children with disabilities not in segregated programs, but in a fully inclusive atmosphere with a true mix of children with and without disabilities.” The program “ensures that children with disabilities are fully included in camping and social gatherings. It also ensures that children without disabilities are exposed to children with challenges that are different from their own,” he adds. “In short, I believe that inclusive programs will make us a better society.

Jay Ruderman

President of the Ruderman Family Foundation

 

I love that the Ramah philosophy is in Israel now. Could it be that after searching for three years, I have found my first integrated camp in Israel?

Stan Goldman

Former Program Director, The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation
We found our way to the driveway of the Nature Center's open door where the Shutaf staff greeted us with bright eyes and heartfelt words of welcome. Respect and patience abound at this special program provided with the support from skilled facilitators and counselors who focused the energy, questions and activities that empowered each of the two small diverse groups of young adults we observed. Thank you for making our time together both delightful and meaningful.

Sherry Grossmann

Director of Community Services at Gateways

 

People inspire me. It's very subjective. I can see something and have an immediate response... Shutaf? It was a no brainer. If it's an area where we need to have more exposure or where the needs are great...I try and see if we can make it work - because we should.  I look forward to that day when GPF can look proudly at Shutaf and say, GPF was with you from the beginning.

Naomi Eisenberger

Good people Fund

Monthly giving is a way to show our ongoing commitment to Shutaf. It’s also easy... Shutaf celebrates individuals for who they are, not what they’re not. What a wonderful way to view our fellow human beings... If creating this type of [inclusive] environment [at Shutaf] leads to a fuller and richer life for all participants, then I want to support it as fully and completely as I can, and I urge others to do the same.

Jay and Naomi Berger

Donor Testimonials

naomi and jay berger

“Monthly giving is a way to show our ongoing commitment to Shutaf. It’s also easy… Shutaf celebrates individuals for who they are, not what they’re not. What a wonderful way to view our fellow human beings… If creating this type of [inclusive] environment [at Shutaf] leads to a fuller and richer life for all participants, then I want to support it as fully and completely as I can, and I urge others to do the same.”

Jay and Naomi Berger

 

Naomi Eisenberger“People inspire me. It’s very subjective. I can see something and have an immediate response… Shutaf? It was a no brainer. If it’s an area where we need to have more exposure or where the needs are great…I try and see if we can make it work – because we should.  I look forward to that day when GPF can look proudly at Shutaf and say, GPF was with you from the beginning.”

Naomi Eisenberger, Good People Fund

Inclusion Stories from Shutaf

Daniella, Shutaf Teen

daniella“Shutaf changed my life,” declared 18 year old, Daniella Perl, a participant in Shutaf’s Young Leadership for Teens. The program, which provides social opportunities, vocational training and interpersonal skill-building, also offers employment at Shutaf vacation camps and weekly activities for teens, ages 14-21. Daniella, who’s currently enrolled in a National Service program for young people with disabilities, doesn’t miss a Thursday evening at Shutaf.

 

 

Ofra, Shutaf Counselor

Ofra worked at Shutaf in August, 2013. A trained educator and coordinator of the Anti Violence Education Program at a Jerusalem high school, Ofra loved her Shutaf experience, especially the pre-camp training.  “It was the best I’ve ever had,”  she describes, adding that the new tools learned are useful in her year-round work. She intends to build her skills further at Shutaf’s year-round training sessions, available to every staffer.

 

Sharona Tal, Shutaf Mom

“Before Shutaf, no camp program could handle my son’s special needs.” Sharona Tal is a single parent to the adorable and challenging, Shalev. Programs that answer Shalev’s needs are hard to find, or non-existent. Shutaf was the answer for them.  The affordable and professionally-run Shutaf programs with a staff dedicated to answering every child’s needs “saved us”. Today they cannot see their life without Shutaf. 

 

 

Meirav Mualmi, Shutaf Mom

Meirav is a mother of triplets- Barel, Batsheva and Oz. Barel and Batsheva have been coming to Shtauf since they were 13 – they are now in their 20s. Bar, who has physical disabilities and some cognitive delays, arrived at Shutaf an angry 13 year old, prone to unexpected outbursts of anger, physical and verbal. It took time and careful attention from Shutaf’s professional staff in order to work through Bar’s anger and help him show his kinder side along with his intelligence and good sense of humor, his love of animals and being outdoors.  “Why is Shutaf so successful? Shutaf provides that real place – for kids – that everyone deserves. If you don’t give up, they don’t give up. When they know that the people surrounding them will not give up on them, and will truly love them? Then, the sky’s the limit. That’s the Shutaf secret.”

 

Mary, Shutaf Camper

Mary had never been to any kind of informal-education program before Shutaf. An inquisitive 14-year old, she has made tremendous headway at Shutaf’s year-round programs. Mary’s aunt, who assists with this immigrant-Russian family’s needs, was thrilled with Mary’s success, noting how her language and social skills have improved dramatically thanks to Shutaf.

 

FROM THE SHUTAF ARCHIVES

[expand title=”Josh’s Story” excerpt=”“Thank G-d for Shutaf! If you are the parent  of a kid with special needs, then you know all about ‘summer camp rejection.’” rel=”inclusionstory-highlander”] As the mother of a child who has mild cerebral palsy, vision impairment and epilepsy, my camper was routinely excluded from most camps.

There are sports camps, swim camps and all kinds of camps for regular children.  Many children with medical and emotional issues also have specific camps that address their needs. There are camps for the blind and visually impaired and camps for children undergoing treatment for cancer. There are camps for children with AIDS and camps for children who have lost loved ones to terror. There are summer camps for children with Autism. This is all good.

Upon arriving in Israel, I heard a lot about the different kaytanot (summer camps) and I was facing the summer with some dread, not having found a camp for Josh. Then I picked up the Jerusalem Post one day and read about other parents – smarter and more can-do than myself – who faced the same problem with their children with special needs and decided to do something about it. They started their own inclusion summer camp for kids, ages 6-21, who have mild to moderate physical and learning disabilities.

It’s called Shutaf (“Partner”), and it meets three times a year – August, Hanukkah and Passover – during school vacations for many special education schools. Children without special needs are included in every camper group. For those over 16, such as my son, there is the option of being on the “junior counselor” track, also an inclusive program – teens with special needs work alongside their typical peers.

Josh loves Shutaf. He has been a junior counselor now for three years. There is something about Shutaf and it’s staff that has made my son more responsible. Josh gets constant professional supervision and is learning how to handle different situations with children and staff. He is given constructive criticism in order to learn and become more attuned to the needs of others like himself.

Although camp is a lot of fun, it is a huge responsibility to work with the children and the staff. Josh has learned to arrive at work on time and to respect those in higher positions. He is sometimes asked to do undesired tasks and has learned to complete them to the best of his ability.

Josh watches the staff closely, learning from their example and how they respond to the children. He feels that it is a safe environment where he can take risks, learn from successes and failures and continue to grow. These are the tools, along with maturity and compassion, that Shutaf has bestowed on our son to equip him for his future.

The lessons learned at Shutaf are priceless.”[/expand]

.
“Your presentation about inclusion and Shutaf was excellent. The Hillel pros were all engaged and excited about your Torah. I look forward to further collaboration between Hillel & Shutaf.”

Esther Abramowitz, Director of Israel Experiences, Hillel Israel

.

“The practical tools for inclusion were very useful”

“Very interesting and helpful”

“I loved the part about success and how it is not measurable but rather personal and dependent on the person”

“Very professional, It was great”

“I really enjoyed the workshop. I learned about Inclusion in the community… and being part

 Bnei Akiva staff training

.

“Beth was fantastic… The students responded well to her facilitation style…  I thought the balance of activities, discussion, text, and short personal stories was spot-on and quite effective.”

Morris Panitz, Ikar 

.

“An informative and intriguing workshop that spread awareness about the place of special needs persons in our society today through an individual approach and application to the group, making it all the more effective and meaningful.”

Liel, Kol Ami

.

“My teachers are still talking about our evening together. Beth’s presentation was one of the better received that we have had… We appreciate Beth’s openness and the way she speaks both professionally and from her own experience. I like the weaving of Jewish values into her talk and flow of the evening. She shifts gears enough to keep teachers focused after a long day of work. I honestly cannot think of a thing I would recommend for changing.”

Cyndi Sherman, Director Of Early Childhood Services, Addison-Penzak Jewish Community Center

workshop participants

shutaf heart  Noam

shutaf heart Ramah Seminar

shutaf heart Daat

shutaf heart Israel Maven

shutaf heart Limmud Jerusalem

shutaf heart Ikar

shutaf heart Hillel

shutaf heart Young Judea

shutaf heart Kol Ami

shutaf heart APJCC

Our Partners

Bader Philanthropies . The Jewish Federation Of Greater Washington . The Jewish Federation In The Heart Of New Jersey . The Good People Fund . Medtronic . Natam . The Jerusalem Rotary Club . Jewish Child's Day