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Seeking to Open the Gates of Torah to All

April 17, 2013
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Jewish Learning Venture will present an important community event for all who seek to make the Jewish community more accessible to those with special needs. The fourth annual YOM LIMMUD: Opening the Gates of Torah conference will be staged on Sunday, April 28, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., at Old York Road Temple-Beth Am, 971 Old York Rd., Abington.

The conference kicks off with a panel discussion on the theme of “All of Israel Is Responsible for One Another.” Members of the community will discuss the positive impact of Jewish professionals on their lives.

Conference participants may select one workshop during each of four sessions offered throughout the day on a broad variety of topics including: assistive technology; Jewish camping options; human development and sexuality; engaging teens to work with their peers with special needs; creating meaningful B’nai Mitzvah; residential options for adults with autism and intellectual disabilities and more. All workshops are led by local and national experts.

All participants are encouraged to visit the StoryCorps room where volunteers will interview persons with special needs and all who love and support them. These stories will be part of a community video presentation.

During registration, at lunch and between workshop sessions, all are encouraged to visit the tables of vendors who have a number of products and services related to the special needs community.

After the conference ends, guests may sign up and stay on for a special screening of the Israeli film Mabul, presented by the Philadelphia Disabilities Film Festival.

Costs are $36 per person for a full day or $18 per person for a half-day session.

The conference is made possible by the support of the Jewish Special Needs Consortium whose members include: The Jewish Federation of Greater Phila­del­phia; JCHAI; Gratz Jewish Community High School; OROT; Federation Early Learning Services; The Friendship Circle; Reconstructionist Rabbinical College; Tikvah Family Camp; Einstein Healthcare Network; The Kohelet Foundation; the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism; JEVS Human Services; Jewish Family and Children’s Service; and the Union for Reform ­Judaism.

Register online at: For more information, call Gabrielle Kaplan-Mayer at 215-320-0376.

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