A Note from CJE's JADE Intern: Erica Newberg

erika%20newberg.jpgMy name is Erica Newberg and I am currently a senior at Towson University. I am a Deaf Studies major with a focus on Human Services. I began to take American Sign Language classes in high school and “fell in love at first sight” with the language and the culture I hope to establish a career where I can interact with the Deaf community on a daily basis. I am the current intern for JADE: Jewish Advocates for Deaf Education, under my supervisor Yael Zelinger who is the Coordinator. I began to work here a few weeks ago and I am having so much fun! I am most excited for the Deafblind Shabbaton, which will take place in June of this year. I have been working closely with the members of the Deafblind Shabbaton planning committee, which includes my supervisor and Tchia Kastor, who is Deaf herself. We have been working together to create and develop a Deafblind friendly map of the Pearlstone Center, where the Shabbaton will be held. In other words, I have been editing the map to make it easier to see as well as to feel. This way, all of the Deafblind participants can easily feel their way around the map.

I am also looking forward to participating in an ASL story time at JTown, in a few weeks. ASL stands for American Sign Language. I will incorporate some basic ASL signs into my storytelling. I have chosen the book titled, “Special People, Special Ways”, by Arlene Maguire. This children’s book talks about how we are all special in our way. Some children wear glasses to help them see and some use  hearing aids to help them hear, but in the end we are all alike. This book was a good way to support February’s Jewish Disabilities Awareness Month.

I am so grateful to be a part of this wonderful organization and all it has to offer the Jewish Deaf community of Maryland.  

CJE is an agency funded by THE ASSOCIATED: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore. www.associated.org