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The Friendship Circle extends a helping hand to families who have children with special needs and aims to involve them in a full range of Judaic, social and educational experiences. The Circle’s unique formula introduces teenage volunteers to children through shared experiences where both are enriched. These teenagers are enriched by volunteering which enables them to reap the rewards of selfless giving.
Our impact is multiplied by the thriving friendships and extensive support system between families of volunteers and those of children with special needs. By extension, the Circle actually includes thousands of people.
At the heart of all of the Friendship Circle’s programming is the belief that each and every individual can be a productive member of the community and benefit from the social support offered by one’s peers. Friendship, acceptance and a chance to participate in socially accepted bonding opportunities are critical to achieving this type of inclusive society.
While many organizations address the issues of children with special needs, most are focused on goal-oriented therapeutic care. The Friendship Circle brings another dimension in that it offers unconditional love. By having this love flow from the youthful spirit of well-guided teenagers, its effectiveness has proven to be remarkable. These volunteers have been able to reach the children in ways that professionals, or even family members, have not.
- Mendy Levertov
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