February is nationally recognized as Jewish Disability Awareness Month. Local organizations and congregations observe what is known as Shabbat Shalem — a Shabbat made “whole” or “complete” by the inclusion of all of its members.
The WAE (Wellness, Arts, Enrichment) Center — a program of the Jewish Service for the Developmentally Disabled of MetroWest — will be a visible component in this month’s Shabbat Shalem observances at Greater MetroWest synagogues, mostly through artwork created by WAE Center clients on display the month of February. These include Adath Shalom, Morris Plains; Temple B’nai Abraham, Livingston; Temple B’nai Or, Morristown; Temple Emanu-El of West Essex, Livingston; Morristown Jewish Center Beit Yisrael; Summit Jewish Community Center; Temple Sholom of West Essex, Cedar Grove; and Temple Ner Tamid, Bloomfield.
WAE Center members will speak to seventh- and eighth-graders at Temple Ner Tamid Wednesday, Feb. 13, about how disability affects their lives, and on Friday, Feb. 15, WAE Center director Marilynn Schneider will join these speakers at services.
Also, Temple B’nai Or will hold a community-wide reception on Saturday, Feb. 23, 5-6:30 p.m. preceding its Purim celebration, and the Summit JCC will welcome Schneider as a participant in its Purim services on Feb. 23.
Individual synagogues and organizations should be contacted for additional programs.