web analytics
April 19, 2014 / 19 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
Spa 1.2 Combining Modern Living in Traditional Jerusalem

A unique and prestigious residential project in now being built in Mekor Haim Street in Jerusalem.



ETTA’s Expansion

(L-R) Dr. Michael Held, executive director of ETTA; Sharon Levine, co-president of ETTA-OHEL’s board of directors; and Liebe and Ivor Geft, recipients of the ETTA Champions Award.

(L-R) Dr. Michael Held, executive director of ETTA; Sharon Levine, co-president of ETTA-OHEL’s board of directors; and Liebe and Ivor Geft, recipients of the ETTA Champions Award.

Share Button

ETTA’s 20th Annual Gala, held recently at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, attracted more than 400 members of the Los Angeles community in support of ETTA’s work on behalf of Jewish adults with special needs.

ETTA, which has merged with OHEL Children’s and Family Services, is the premier resource for residential services for Jewish individuals with disabilities on the West Coast. It also provides many other services supporting people with special needs, including: life-skills training; job coaching; social events; a day program; a summer program; and educational programs. ETTA envisages an inclusive, participatory community of people with and without special needs – succeeding and growing together.

This year’s banquet was particularly meaningful, as it marked ETTA’s 20th Anniversary. The organization was founded in 1993 as the realization of retired LAUSD special education teacher Etta Israel’s dream. Her modest estate was dedicated to founding ETTA, which over the past 20 years has become a beacon of hope for people with disabilities and the families that love them.

ETTA’s work was celebrated and appreciated by gala participants, including the ETTA-OHEL board and ETTA’s advisory board. Many OHEL board members and executive staff were in attendance, as were many elected officials. They included State Controller John Chiang, California Democratic Party Vice Chair Eric Bauman, Assemblyman Richard Bloom, and Assemblyman Adrin Nazarian. ETTA’s Government Relations Group chairman, attorney Sam Yebri, officially welcomed them.

Dr. Michael Held, ETTA’s executive director, explained the organization’s current focus: a plan called “200 by 2020.” He is authoring this effort with ETTA’s Visionary Award recipient, Michael Baruch. Due to great need ETTA’s goal is to house, or support in various housing arrangements, 200 individuals with disabilities by the year 2020. Toward that end, Held proudly announced the opening of Bedford House, ETTA’s fifth home – and first on the Westside. This house is not a group home but rather a privately run home for high-functioning women who still require some support.

Liebe and Ivor Geft received the ETTA Champions Award. Liebe Geft is the director of the Museum of Tolerance, the educational arm of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. Ivor Geft is a renowned cardiologist at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, and teaches many Torah classes in the Los Angeles area. “What is so meaningful about supporting ETTA,” noted Liebe Geft, “is that it enables and ennobles these individuals with special needs to give to others, which is our purpose in life.”

Michelle Wolf, co-founder of the HaMercaz Jewish Family Service of Los Angeles and currently transitions project coordinator for Bet Tzedek Legal Services, received the Professional Leadership Award for her 25 years of advocacy and innovation in the field – helping her son Danny and countless others. Wolf was touched by the surprise appearance by and introduction from her daughter Rachel, whom ETTA flew in from New York.

An evening highlight was a speech by Moshe Bienenfeld, a young man with autism who was honored with ETTA’s Lazare, z”l, and Moselle Hendeles Young Leadership Award. Bienenfeld reminded everyone that people with challenges are not “disabled” but rather “differently abled.” He shared his pride in being a spokesperson for individuals with autism.

The evening concluded with the award presentation to Baruch, founder of Baruch Enterprises and tireless worker on behalf of ETTA. “What could be more important than giving a home to people who need a home?” Baruch asked the audience. “You all can help our vision to provide homes to all the people who are in need.”

Share Button

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

No Responses to “ETTA’s Expansion”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
FBI Wanted poster for Osama bin Laden
Pakistan Library Renamed to Honor bin Laden
Latest Sections Stories
Schonfeld-logo1

Regardless of age, parents play an important role in their children’s lives.

Marriage-Relationship-logo

We peel away one layer after the next, our eyes tear up and it becomes harder and harder to see as we get closer to our innermost insecurities and fears.

Gorsky-041814-Torah

Some Mountain Jews believe they are descendents of the Ten Lost Tribes and were exiled to Azerbaijan and Dagestan by Sancheriv.

Baim-041814-Piggy

Yom Tov is about spending time with your family. And while for some families the big once-in-a-lifetime experience is great, for others something low key is the way to go.

A fascinating glimpse into the rich complexity of medieval Jewish life and its contemporary relevance had intriguingly emerged.

Dear Dr. Yael:

My heart is breaking; my husband’s friend has gotten divorced. While this type of situation is always sad, here I do believe it could have been avoided.

The plan’s goal is to provide supportive housing to 200 individuals with disabilities by the year 2020.

Despite being one of the fastest-growing Jewish communities in the U.S. – the estimated Jewish population is 70-80,000 – Las Vegas has long been overlooked by much of the Torah world.

She was followed by the shadows of the Six Million, by the ever so subtle awareness of their vanished presence.

Pesach is so liberating (if you excuse the expression). It’s the only time I can eat anywhere in the house, guilt free! Matzah in bed!

Now all the pain, fear and struggle were over and they were home. Yuli was safe and free, a hero returned to his land and people.

While it would seem from his question that he is being chuzpadik and dismissive, I wonder if its possible, if just maybe, he is a struggling, confused neshama who actually wants to come back to the fold.

I agree with the letter writer that a shadchan should respectfully and graciously accept a negative response to a shidduch offer.

Alternative assessments are an extremely important part of understanding what students know beyond the scope of tests and quizzes.

More Articles from Jeanne Litvin
Tali Hill, a beneficiary of the Max Factor Family Foundation.

The plan’s goal is to provide supportive housing to 200 individuals with disabilities by the year 2020.

Despite being one of the fastest-growing Jewish communities in the U.S. – the estimated Jewish population is 70-80,000 – Las Vegas has long been overlooked by much of the Torah world.

Los Angeles-born Meir Kin, despite his refusal to grant his wife, Lonna (Presser) Kin, a get, married another woman in Las Vegas last month.

Following their musical performance, choir members distributed hamantaschen to and mingled with the residents, thereby strengthening the connection between the generations.

    Latest Poll

    Now that Kerry's "Peace Talks" are apparently over, are you...?







    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/community/west-coast-happenings/ettas-expansion/2014/01/23/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: