Federation’s Opening the Doors Program Wins Slingshot Recognition

November 3, 2014 | Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit

Opening the Doors for Children with a diversity of learning abilities, Federation’s innovation in education wins Slingshot recognition for the second year in a row.

Slingshot has released Slingshot ‘14 – ‘15 – its tenth annual guide to North America’s most innovative Jewish organizations. The Guide, a go-to resource for volunteers, activists and donors looking for new opportunities and projects, will help ensure the Jewish community remains relevant and thriving.

Among the hundreds of organizations that applied for inclusion, 82 were selected, including Detroit-based Opening the Doors, a program of Federation’s Alliance for Jewish Education. Organizations and programs listed in the guide were evaluated on their innovative approach, the impact they have in their work, the leadership they have in their sector, and their effectiveness at achieving results. In addition Opening the Doors was selected in the firs-ever Slingshot Midwest Edition Supplement, along with 19 other organizations. In 2013, Opening the Doors received its first Slingshot recognition with the publication of the Slingshot Disabilities and Inclusion Supplement, highlighting the nation’s top 20 Jewish nonprofits leading the way to educational breakthrough in the area of special needs.

Founded in 1995, and under the direction of Ellen Maiseloff since 2007, Federation’s Opening the Doors program has been committed to supporting students with learning, behavioral and social challenges to ensure that they receive a meaningful Jewish education along with their peers. Since its inception, the program has grown in numbers served by 400 per cent, and now provides classroom and one-on-one support to nearly 1,100 students annually in 26 early childhood programs, Jewish day schools and congregations at no additional cost to parents.

“Our national endorsement recognizing the wide range of services we provide families in the community is one more leap forward,” stated Ellen Maiseloff. “Our goal always has been to build support for our students, so they may participate in a Jewish education, create positive collaborations, as well as awareness of our work as a leader in the field of special education.”

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