Yedidut at Camp Yavneh
We are pleased to announce the return of Yedidut, our inclusive initiative. “Yedidut” is Hebrew for “Friendship”, and with that as our motto we strive to create opportunities for Friendship by working to understand the needs of every camper and give the opportunity for each child to participate and thrive in an inclusive environment. Each camper’s talents and qualities are contributing factors that help build a sense of community, equally valuing each child, while still preserving the group cabin experience for all. Our goal at Camp Yavneh is to support all campers in their efforts to participate in fun, learning, and new experiences to the best of their ability, share meals in a group setting, and develop strong peer-to-peer relations for a lifetime of friendship. We place extra emphasis on teaching our campers, through experience, what it means to be part of an inclusive Jewish community.
The Camp Yavneh philosophy – K’lal Yisrael
Camp Yavneh’s overarching philosophy is that, as a pluralistic camp, all of k’lal Yisrael (all Jews are one) should be celebrated together. This is true not only for the differences campers may have in their practice of Judaism, but we also celebrate the differences campers may have in their personal development. The principle of “kol yisrael arevim zeh lazeh” (all of Israel is responsible for one another) guides us as we ensure a place for each individual camper to succeed at camp. We believe that inclusion is good for everyone – kids with and without disabilities, families, staff, and our entire community.
About our Yedidut Campers
We understand that it takes great intentional, active and thoughtful supervision and support to make certain that each and every child is given the chance to enjoy the most positive experience at camp. To do so, we hire and train the best staff, including counselors, division heads, supervisors and others.
To ensure that we achieve an environment where the needs of every camper are met, we plan only to accept 4-5 campers aged 9-12 into our Yedidut program for the 2017 season. Furthermore, in an effort to make Yedidut a realistic possibility for as wide an audience as possible, there will be no additional charge for Yedidut – fees and dates are identical for all campers and can be found at http://campyavneh.org/the-yavneh-experience/dates-fees-faqs/
Our inclusion coordinator meets each camper and their family so that we can make sure that we have the proper accommodations. Families work in partnership with our Inclusion Coordinator to ensure the camper’s success for the summer. This may include a more comprehensive needs assessment, collaboration with professionals who work with your child, scheduling a home visit, and maintaining regular communication throughout the off season as we prepare for the summer.
Meet our Yedidut Director
We are pleased to introduce Miriam Loren as our newly hired Inclusion Coordinator. Miriam is a Barnard College graduate and earned a Master’s Degree in Early Childhood and Special Education from Teachers College at Columbia University.
Miriam worked at TheraCare where she was trained and gained skills in Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA). During her time at TheraCare, Miriam provided ABA based special instruction services to individual children. Additionally, Miriam has spent time working as an evaluator, using criterion-based assessments, to determine eligibility for Early Intervention (EI) and preschool-aged services (CPSE). Miriam worked for several years at Achieving Milestones, an EI-based program through Westchester Jewish Community Services (WJCS) and ran several EI classrooms for developmentally delayed children and their parents. She continued to work with children who have been diagnosed with Autism, Asperger’s Syndrome and Pervasive Developmental Disorder using ABA and evaluating children for services. Miriam also represented Achieving Milestones at IFSP meetings. Additionally, Miriam sits on Westchester Jewish Council’s Building Communities Roundtable, a committee focused on the inclusion of developmentally disabled children into mainstream synagogue, school, and community activities.
Currently, Miriam is working for Yedidut and otherwise is at home tending to her five small boys and volunteering at their respective schools. Miriam served as the Parent Association President at Carmel Academy for six years and has volunteered for other school functions. Miriam lives in New Rochelle, NY with her husband Ari and their five sons.