Inclusion

Our Caring Culture

We are committed to helping you address physical or mental health challenges or developmental or intellectual disabilities.

At the core of Beth El’s caring culture is our commitment to accommodate congregants’ and guests’ special needs.

  • Several wheelchairs are available at the synagogue entrance.
  • The main sanctuary and the chapel have ramps to enable individuals needing a wheelchair, walker, or cane to go up on the bimah.
  • An audio loop is available in the main sanctuary for hearing impaired individuals for religious services and secular discussions.
  • In the chapel, we offer hearing assistance using an FM receiver.
  • Sign language interpreters are available upon request.
  • There is a “quiet room” in the back of the sanctuary where a parent can take a child (with or without a disability) during services if the child is not able to sit quietly but the parent would like to be able to pray.
  • Services in the main sanctuary and the chapel are live-streamed, so that anyone who cannot be there physically can watch them live.

Our clergy and staff devote special attention to creating uniquely tailored services for B’nai Mitzvah who confront developmental or intellectual disabilities or mental health challenges that make a typical service surpassingly difficult. Their objective is to create an experience that will be meaningful while at the same time comfortable for the child and other guests.

JDAIM Shabbat

We offer special services during a Shabbat each February, when Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion Month is celebrated. You can read a special issue of the Beth El Scroll, the monthly newsletter, devoted to Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion month.

Beth El has a Disabled Access Fund to which donations can be directed.

We Were All At Sinai: The Transformative Power of Inclusive Torah

B’ruchim Habaim Committee

The Beth El B’ruchim Habaim committee welcomes and accommodate people with disabilities and their families. Formed in 2005, the group has helped to address physical barriers and communication issues and more recently has focused on welcoming people with mental illness and people on the autism spectrum.

Committee members meet regularly with congregants at other synagogues with shared goals and with professionals at the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington as part of the Synagogue Disability Inclusion Network.

If you have concerns about how a family member’s special needs or disabilities are interfering with full inclusion in our community, or if you would like to join the committee, please contact Andrea Golden of the B’ruchim Habaim committee at andreag71061@comcast.net.