April 20, 2024
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April 20, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

OHEL Bais Ezra Hosts Autism Family Day in New York City

OHEL Bais Ezra, a leading provider of innovative services for those on the Autism project recently organized an inaugural Autism Family Day.

Over 100 people—individuals diagnosed on the autism spectrum together with their parents and siblings—joined OHEL to see the Broadway show “Aladdin.”

The program was made possible thanks to generous funding received from the New York City Council and the Department of Mental Health and Mental Hygiene and coordinated under the auspices of the Theater Development Fund (TDF). The TDF sponsors the Autism Theater Initiative, which develops autism-friendly shows for those diagnosed on the spectrum.

It was a full-packed day of adventure and fun enjoyed by all!

The day began with a coach bus ride into New York City, where each family received a custom-made package of paraphernalia to assist with the theater experience —including stress balls, headphones, a soundtrack of the play and lunch for one and all.

The excitement only grew as the families entered the New Amsterdam Theater.

The TDF staff provided any assistance needed by the families, together with the on-hand and dedicated OHEL Bais Ezra staff.

Subtle adaptations were integrated into the evening to optimize the play experience—from slightly softer music, an allowance for greater movement by the audience and easily accessible additional room for individuals to take any needed breaks.

Families were mesmerized by the experience, being together as a family, and given the opportunity to do what many families do on a Sunday—have a family outing together, going to a community-based event.

As one parent stated, “Having a special needs child often makes it difficult to do things as a family. I never thought that I would be able to take my family to a grocery store together, let alone a Broadway show! Today was one of the few outings we were able to do as a family.” And as a brother commented, “I really enjoyed being able to take my sister to an event where she was warmly accommodated and welcomed.”

Since 1969 OHEL has served as a dependable haven of individual and family support, helping people of all ages surmount disability and everyday challenges, heal from trauma and manage with strength and dignity during times of crisis. OHEL serves thousands in need every day in communities in New York, New Jersey, California and worldwide. Individuals interested in the many programs that OHEL offers should contact OHEL at 800-603-OHEL (6435). Like us on Facebook at OHEL Children’s Home and Family Services, follow us on Instagram @ohelfamily or visit us at www.ohelfamily.org.

 

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