Serving People with Disabilities and Their Families

Serving People with Disabilities and Their Families

Nanette Cohen, Director, Duman Opportunity Center

February is Jewish Disability, Awareness, Acceptance & Inclusion Month (JDAIM). JCFS Chicago is proud to join Jewish organizations and communities from all over the world in a unified effort to raise awareness and champion the civil rights of people with disabilities.

JCFS Chicago’s vision for supporting children and adults with disabilities comprehensively addresses community needs beginning at birth, through childhood, young adults and adults. Teams of dedicated professionals are working together to help children, adults and families live their best lives. Together, we are building a community of inclusion.

JCFS offers services and supports changing the trajectory of a child’s life through speech therapy, physical therapy and other types of services based on the needs of the child and family.

Respite takes a supportive, nurturing and therapeutic approach, combined with fun, social and recreational activities, while providing a well-deserved break for families caring for children and youth with special needs. Group respite offers children with intellectual/developmental disabilities an opportunity to participate in entertaining social and recreational activities.

JCFS Chicago also helps individuals and families coordinate home-based services such as community day services, supported employment, home modification, adaptive equipment costs, hiring a personal support worker and various therapies and provides practical skills training to enable individuals to direct and manage their own services.

Community Connections assists individuals in increasing their social connections. With one-to-one support participants can build skills that will help expand their interests, meet new people, and develop friendships. Sibshops provides brothers and sisters of children with a variety of special needs a place to meet other siblings in a relaxed, supportive, and recreational setting.

Our consumer-directed residential support model focuses on individual choice and family partnering, facilitating connections for individuals who would like to live together. Using a person-centered approach to foster independence, we empower residents to be more self-sufficient and use resources in the community. Many residents are employed, use public transportation, are socially engaged and often visit their families.

The Duman Opportunity Center is committed to helping people with disabilities find and maintain meaningful employment through high-quality, customized services and streamlined supports, such as job readiness training, placement assistance, retention strategies and job coaching. For employers looking to build an inclusive workplace, the Duman Opportunity Center offers support to businesses who embrace disability inclusion in their hiring practices.

For more information or to access any of these services or programs, please call 855.275.5237 or visit our website.