Clinicians and participants at a recent JCFS Sibshop gathering welcomed Happy Siblings, an adult sibling team from Ewha Womans University in Seoul, South Korea, who were visiting as part of the University’s Global Frontier program. Sibling support programs are not offered in South Korea, notes JCFS Services for People with Disabilities Manager, Tammy Besser, LCSW. “Our guests’ purpose was to learn about these programs. When they return home, they hope to raise awareness of the need for sibling support in South Korea and to offer a systematic sibling support program.”
“The common thread of disability made it easy for our Korean guests and the participants to relate to one another,” adds Emily Tegenkamp, LCSW, Disability Navigator at Jewish Child & Family Services. “I appreciated their curiosity and their interest to learn about services and supports in the U.S., and their ease in engaging in activities with our participants or Sibs.”
The visitors, three of whom are studying special education back home, seamlessly integrated into the Sibshop and participated along with the other Sibs. “They seemed to enjoy the activities as much as our younger participants. I think they were impressed at the different family support services that JCFS offers,” adds Besser. “It was an absolute delight and honor to host the Happy Siblings team. I wish we could have spent more time with them.”
Sibshops are monthly gatherings where brothers and sisters of children with special needs meet in a relaxed, supportive and recreational setting to share their common joys and concerns. Visit our calendar for upcoming JCFS Sibshop dates and locations.