FRIENDSHIP CIRCLE PALO ALTO
The Jeff Astor Foundation in 2021 sponsored 2 monthly play-based programs for children ages 3-5 with special needs ages. The children will participate in fun and engaging activities with the support of teen volunteer buddies. In addition to a Young Adult Day excursion to San Francisco which will include train rides, museums and lunch, we continue to sponsor the Jeff Astor Sports Day for the special needs children.
In 2020 the JEFF ASTOR FOUNDATION sponsored a newly launched monthly Parent Support Group with professionals supporting the parents of special needs children by providing counseling, and helpful ideas such as special needs trusts, schooling and more. Once COVID ends the Parent Support Group will include field trips.
In 2019 and 2020 the Jeff Astor Foundation supported a program called the JEFF ASTOR TEEN EXPERIENCE, by bringing in speakers and educators with a focus on Israel, the Holocaust, education and general Jewish knowledge. In April 2019 in honor of Holocaust Remembrance Day, Friendship Circle brought in a speaker who survived the Holocaust.
In the summer of 2019 the JAF sponsored a JEFF ASTOR SPORTS DAY for the special needs children – see the picture below.
We have helped provide speakers to educate and support the parents of special needs children. We have also contributed to a twice annual evening get away for the moms of children with special needs. In 2016 our contribution went towards a Parent Date Night and Kids Night Out, when parents dropped off their kids in their pajamas, watched a video, did crafts and hung out while the parents had a special date night.
The Friendship Circle in Palo Alto, is dedicated to creating a supportive Jewish community for special needs children, their families and high school volunteers. The Friendship Circle pairs high students with special needs children to provide these children a full range of social, Judaic and educational experiences.