Ezer Mizion's Beit Chana Activity Clubs for the mentally-challenged have been awarded the 2006 prize for the best staff by the Keren Shalem Fund for the Development of Services for the Retarded.
Former Minister of Social Services Shaul Yahalom, heads of local councils, and other public figures were present at the festive award ceremony, held in Ramat Gan's Diamond Theatre. "Ezer Mizion's activity clubs are outstanding and unique in their scope of activity and times of service," noted Reva Muskal, director-general of Keren Shalem.
The clubs provide constructive activities and enrichment for mentally-challenged youngsters on weekdays and Shabbat, significantly easing the burden on their families, most of which have many children. The clubs are coordinated by Menucha Finkelstein, a special education teacher. The professional staff includes special education teachers, a music therapist, an occupational therapist, and developmental aides. An art therapist on the staff of the Israel Museum teaches techniques that enable the youngsters to express themselves and to produce highly attractive, and often very high quality, works of art. 500 volunteers, mainly students of special education, as well as high school students, are the lifeblood of the activity clubs. They pick up the children from their homes on Shabbat, help with homework, clean up, do whatever needs to be done.
"The activity clubs bring to the fore the potential of mentally-challenged people on the one hand, and on the other the readiness of the community to help them to advance," noted Muscal.
Picture - Menucha Finkelstein, Director of Ezer Mizion Activity Club, receives award.
Beit Chana Activity Club
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Child Development Lecture Series