WJCS Holiday Guide is Here!
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The Holiday Guide Is Here!


Autism Center

WJCS Programs
Special Needs Programs In The Greater Westchester Area

Supports For Family Members


Vacation Options

Parks and Recreation Departments

The Autism Center offers all members of the community (families, individuals and professionals) centralized information and referral resources. We're very excited to present you with the WJCS Autism Center Holiday Break Guide 2019-2020. Happy Holidays!
The information and activities provided by the agencies below are for your interest and is not an endorsement by Westchester Jewish Community Services.  If you are interested in any of these activities, please contact the camp or program directly.
If you're interested in any of the Autism Center programs or need assistance in finding other resources, please contact Lee Englander, M.A., Program Coordinator, Autism Center at, 914-761-0600 x2228



WJCS provides a comprehensive continuum of care for people with disabilities and their families. Agency programs and extensive partnerships support individuals and their families throughout the life cycle and during transition periods to reach their potential, enhance their strengths and lives as independently as possible within supportive communities

845 North Broadway, White Plains, NY
Affordable consultation and educational advocacy services for families with children with special needs.Educational Advocacy helps parents navigate the special education system, identify and understand their child's needs, and feel more empowered in the Individualized Education Program (IEP) process. Services include initial consultation as well as classroom observation and representation at Committee on Special Education (CSE) and Committee on Preschool Special Education (CPSE) meetings.
Lee Englander, M.A. Program Coordinator, Autism Center
Phone: (914) 761-0600 Ext. 2228

FAMILY ADVOCACY (FAD) is a social, recreational, skills-based group for high school age adolescents with autism. Meeting twice-monthly on Thursday evenings in a club-like format, participants engage in experiential activities planned to enhance social, recreational and independent living skills. 
Patricia L. Grossman, LCSW, Director, Outpatient Services for People with Developmental Disabilities
Phone: (914) 949-7699 Ext. 2455

A monthly group that allows grandparents to share the special struggle of having a grandchild with autism. Participants share triumphs and challenges, develop a support network and identify strategies for an improved family life.
Lee Englander, M.A. Program Coordinator, Autism Center
Phone: (914) 761-0600 Ext. 2228


Addressing the self-care needs of parents of children (of all ages) with autism, this group will cover managing strong emotions, reactivity and stress, increasing coping strategies, becoming aware of boundaries, limits and feelings before reaching them. 

Patricia L. Grossman, LCSW, Director, Outpatient Services for People with Developmental Disabilities
Phone: (914) 949-7699 Ext. 2455

Moving Forward is a socialization and recreational group for men and women over the age of 18 with developmental disabilities. Within the context of a mental health clinic, emphasis is placed on enabling consumers to grow socially, enhance management of daily living activities and negotiate issues that arise in their environments.

The group organizes, plans and implements its own recreational, educational and cultural activities, including a monthly support group, with the guidance of a clinical social worker.
Patricia L. Grossman, LCSW, Director, Outpatient Services for People with Developmental Disabilities
Phone: (914) 949-7699 Ext. 2455



WJCS offers an evidence-based Parent Behavior Management (PMT) group for parents of children with developmental disabilities or autism. PMT, developed by Dr. Alan Kazdin at Yale Child Study Center, has been shown to be effective in decreasing oppositional, aggressive, and antisocial behavior. PMT trains parents to manage their child’s behavioral problems in the home and at school. Parents learn new ways to understand their child’s behavior and to practice skills and techniques for effectively handling problem behaviors. Parents are active participants in the group including role plays and weekly homework assignments (e.g. behavior charts). An assessment of the child is required prior to attendance in this group. The group can be billed through many commercial insurance plans as well as Medicaid, Medicaid Managed,  and Child Health Plus, or at a self-pay fee. 
Norma Litman, LCSW
Phone: 914-949-7699 Ext. 2408

845 North Broadway White Plains, NY
Project Lifesaver is a program designed to help individuals affected with autism and other developmental disabilities who may wander or get lost and are looking for an extra layer of security. In partnership with Westchester County Departments of Community Mental Health and Public Safety, this program offers locator bracelets similar to those used with people who are diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. Project Lifesaver uses state-of-the-art technology, with registered wristband transmitters, to locate wandering and lost children and adults.
Lee Englander, M.A. Program Coordinator, Autism Center
Phone: (914) 761-0600 Ext. 2228

Isabel Pettersen, Program Assistant, Autism Center
Phone: (914) 761-0600 Ext. 2230


WJCS “Shelanu” (Ours), is a membership community for Jewish young adults, 18 – 35, with autism, and their friends.

Shelanu creates a home away from home, using spaces in White Plains to experience a community grounded in Jewish values and practices where they can come together to share, learn and grow, both socially and emotionally.

For young adults with autism, moving into adulthood is a critical juncture. Developing lasting friendships, having a place to go with friends, sharing experiences, participating in activities together will enable young adults with autism to increase their skills and confidence to succeed in a safe and supportive place.
Robin Davies-Small
Phone: (914) 761-0600  Ext. 2480

Taft Center and a variety of eateries in downtown White Plains

The Supper Club, designed for adults 18 - 35, eases the social isolation often experienced by people with autism. In an informal yet structured setting, participants meet for dinner weekly and have the opportunity to improve communication skills, develop connections with others and reinforce strengths. The relaxed setting allows members to come together in a non-threatening environment to share their personal experiences, gain emotional support, insight and strategies for coping with daily struggles with work, family and friends. This support community encourages open discussion on topics of interest, reinforcing positive social interactions.
Lee Englander, M.A. Program Coordinator, Autism Center
Phone: (914) 761-0600 Ext. 2228


TSS is a social skills program for children ages 4 to -15 who have autism. In a supportive atmosphere, curriculum-based groups teach and provide the opportunity to practice essential social skills including play and friendship, emotional regulation, and conversation to enhance their social and emotional growth.  As partners, parents learn and practice skills taught to reinforce them at home and in the community.  
Norma Litman, LCSW
Phone: (914) 949-7699 Ext. 2408

JCC of Mid-Westchester:
Vacation Mini-Programs
999 Wilmont Road Scarsdale, NY, 110583

Early Childhood (2-5 yrs)
Children will participate in favorite activities including gym, arts & crafts, music, cooking, computers, stories, and more.  December 23, 24, 26, 27

Swim Vacation (4-15 yrs)
Swim specialists lead two instructional swim lessons, arts & crafts, fun & games in and out of the pool.  December 23, 26, 27, 30 and Jan 2, 3

Winter Escape (4-11 yrs)
Specialist activities, free play, indoor movement, and more.  December 30, 31, January 2, 3, and special January 1 only,  10am to 2pm session.

Winter Break Programs - TBA 
February 18, 19, 20, 21 in 2020

Available: December 26, 27, 28th
Contact Caryn Symons: (914) 472-3300, x 412


Shames JCC on the Hudson Vacation Programs:
371 South Broadway Tarrytown, NY 10591

Vacation Sensation (Grades K-6)
Spend MLK Day with us! A day full of activities!

Vacation Sensation Plus (ages 5 - 12 years)
Program geared towards children on the autism spectrum or with related developmental disabilities.  Includes field trips and on-site programming.

Vacation Sensation Junior (ages 3 -4 years)
A two-hour drop-off program for younger children, full of activities!

Programs will run for December/January Winter Recess on December 26th, 27th, 30th, 31st and January 2nd and 3rd; and for February Recess on February 18th, 19th, 20th, and 21st.

Samantha Lewis
(914) 366-7898 x1163

Contact Melissa Deierlein
(914) 366-7898


YWCA White Plains: Mini Vacation Camp
515 North Street White Plains, NY, 10605

School Vacation Camps(Ages 5 to 21)
When school is out, make it a great day at the Y with arts and crafts, sports, swimming, games, outings and more! Children are divided by age to be sure they spend time with friends.
*Round Trip, door- to-door transportation available
*Arrangements need to be made ahead of time, so call as soon as possible!

Seasonal Holiday Camps
Children will enjoy our holiday camp featuring FUN. Round trip, door-to-door transportation is available.

Christmas break & Presidents' break
Jennifer DeFelice
(914) 949-6227 ext. 108

Richmond Children's Center & Community Services
Quality Care & Service

The children will have the opportunity to engage in the following activities: arts & crafts, tabletop games, special themed activities, baking, sensory, reading groups, birthday celebrations, seasonal activities, sports, science experiments, and much more.  Takes place Saturdays 10AM to 3PM in Mt. Kisco, NY.

Shannon Shapiro
(914) 471-4172


Rising Treetops at Oakhurst
(formerly Camp Oakhurst)
1140 Broadway, Suite 903, New York, NY 10010

Care and supervision is provided 24/7 from a caring and trained staff that live on site.  Clients will have access to a full program of therapeutic recreational activities, including off-site trips.  Family caregivers who are caring for someone with special needs in their own home need periodic breaks.  They can get one while the individual with special needs enjoys a weekend or up to a week stay at Rising Treetops at Oakhurst.  Respites are scheduled throughout the year and vary in length.  Please contact the New Jersey office at 732-531-0215 for information on fees and scholarships.

Sessions are offered regularly from late September through early June next year and are between 2 and 7 night stays. Some families get to and from Rising Treetops at Oakhurst on their own; others receive central site transportation from NYC in Lift-equipped vehicles.

Youth respite - ages 8 -25 yrs
Autism respite - all ages
Adult respite - ages 26+

December 2019, January 2020, and February 2020 dates available
For more information call: (732) 531-0215 or (212) 533-4020


Project Time-Out
Westchester Jewish Community Services
Respite provided by WJCS which allows caregivers the opportunity to attend to medical, social, recreational or business matters while providing stimulating companionship, supervision and socialization to the client.
Program coordinators offer free assessments of a family's respite needs and information regarding the range of WJCS services, as well as programs throughout Westchester County that enrich the lives of senior citizens.

Carol Kobroff
For more information call: (914) 761-0600 Ext. 2310 

Family Respite Services
Family Focus:  Yorktown Heights

A voluntary non-profit agency dedicated to serving families with a developmentally disabled family member. In-home respite reimbursement, family designed, family driven, families hire, train and supervise their own respite providers. It provides families choice, flexibility and consistency. Assists families by offering information linkage and referral as requested.

Mary Ellen Tegtmeier
(914) 962-6295
Pat Edelstein
(914) 962-6296

Respite House (Overnight)
ARC of Westchester: Thornwood

Our freestanding Respite House provides planned overnight visits for both children and adults. The cozy home, located in a quiet neighborhood in Thornwood, has space for up to six individuals. Up to five guests are scheduled in advance and the last spot is saved for use by a family in crisis. The average respite visit ranges from one night to a full week, with longer stays possible if a family should need them.

(914) 949-9300

Taconic Innovations

In home respite for non-Medicaid eligible persons, 4-12 hrs/week, or persons awaiting Medicaid eligibility.

Sandi Ali  (914) 668-9041 or (914) 557-3878


Botanical Garden Holiday Train Show
2900 Southern Blvd., Bronx, NY 10458

Enchanting model trains zip through a display of 150 landmarks, each re-created with bark, leaves, and other natural materials—all under the twinkling glow of the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory. Marvel at G-scale locomotives humming along among familiar sights such as the Brooklyn Bridge, Statue of Liberty, and Rockefeller Center—surprising at every turn—on nearly a half-mile of track.   Making their debut this year are Central Park and the Belvedere Castle.

Dates Available: Saturday, November  23, 2019 to Sunday, January 26, 2020
(718) 817- 8700

Museum Access Consortium
Public programs for children with developmental or learning disabilities and their families. Specialized programming, ASL and early hours for venues such as the Metropolitan Museum, the Intrepid, American Museum of Natural History, the Jewish Museum, etc.

Check on our website for scheduled events:


New Frontiers in Learning
Winter in the City Program

Join us for an exciting experience!  New York City offers limitless opportunities to build competence in areas such as:  Executive Functioning, Social Engagement, and Traveling.  Winter in the City  focuses on participation in skill-building activities, and meaningful social and cultural experiences. Skill building activities will revolve around Social Skills, Self-Care, Self-Advocacy, and Independent Travel.

Session runs from January 2nd to January 15th, 2020
Hours are 11am to 2pm
Location:  New York City
(646) 558-0085

Bowling at The All Star
96 Main Road, Riverhead, NY 11901

Bowlers and special needs individuals are invited to bowl on the main lanes and experience the arcade with the latest games.  

Available during school closings & federal holidays 10AM to 12AM
Mon - Fri 12PM to 12 AM
Sat  10AM to 1AM
Sun 10AM to 11PM 
Samuel Ruiz, manager
(631) 998-3565


Stepping Stones Museum for Children
Open Arms Accessibility Initiative

303 West Avenue Norwalk, CT, 06850

Free admissions for families with children who have special needs. This provides families with the opportunity to enjoy the museum’s exhibits, mingle with other families and learn with their child in a safe and welcoming environment. An Open Arms program.

Accessibility Evenings  5PM to 8PM, first Thursday of each month
My Ability, Sensory-friendly Program  3:30PM to 5PM, every Thursday
ACCESS-Ability Program  2PM to 5PM, third Monday of each month
(203) 899-0606 Ext. 233
Shpresa Bungu-Rivera


Bounce!  Trampoline Sports
612 Corporate Way, Valley Cottage, NY, 10989

Sensational Kids 
Bounce! Trampoline Sports now offers a program called Sensory Tuesdays which has been a big hit with families of children with sensory issues and those with autism.  It takes place Tuesday evenings from 6 to 7PM and on some special holidays.

Available: Every Tuesday of the year 2019-2020
(845) 268-4000

Family Ties of Westchester
Providing peer support and advocacy services to families impacted by behavioral health challenges.

Ossining Family Ties resource center
(914) 941-3461

Peekskill Family Ties resource center
(914) 739-4725

Mount Vernon Family Ties resource center
(914) 667-9369

White Plains Family Ties resource center
(914) 995-5238

Yonkers Family Ties resource center
(914) 964-2063


Westchester Therapy Solutions
Holiday Toy List

Looking for Holiday Gifts?  Educational toys, suggestions & resources for families, fine motor activities, gross motor games, sensory play, cozy corners, fidgets for self-regulation, and more.  This list was developed by occupational therapists at Westchester Therapy Solutions.  Click below for Holiday Gift List.


JCC of Manhattan
334 Amsterdam Avenue at W. 76th Street, NYC

Father's Talk: A Group For Fathers Of Children With Developmental Delays

Dads often have a difficult time accepting a child's diagnosis.  Join other fathers who understand the challenges you might be facing.  This group will provide an opportunity to exchange resources, network, learn parenting strategies, and build community with the help of an experienced support group facilitator. Discussions are kept confidential. 

Support Groups For Parents Of Children With Developmental Delays

Join other parents of children who have been identified as having developmental challenges of all kinds, who understand the isolation, frustration, and financial stressors that families likes yours often face.  The combined expertise of the facilitators and the parents' personal experiences provide support, resources, strategies, therapy options, and connections as we build community together.  Discussions are kept confidential.

Support Group For Parents Of Young Adults/Adults With Developmental Disabilities

Parents of adults with developmental delays, LD, or ADHD face issues and concerns related to independent living, jobs and job support, housing, and such questions as "What happens when I'm gone?"  This group will provide an opportunity for parents to come together to share resources and experiences, solve problems, and build community with the help of experienced support group facilitators, helping to lessen the feelings of isolation and fear for the future.  Discussions are kept confidential. Please note that these groups are open to all parents, not only those whose children participate in Adaptations or Connections.

 Hannah Kaplan-Cohen
(646) 505-4460


The Guidance Center of Westchester
Families of Children with ASD and Developmental Disorders
Creative Learning Center at 17 Anderson Street, New Rochelle, NY 

Family Days and Parents Support Group
Family Days and Parent Support Group provide respite and guidance to families who have children (ages 3-8 years) who have developmental delays or who are on the autism spectrum.  We also offer group and individual counseling to parents and caregivers.  Funded by the Office of People with Developmental Delays (OPWDD), these services are free to families.  We're making changes to Family Days.  Check back for details!
Every other Saturday, from 11am to 1pm.

Kevin McCloat
(914) 498-2749


Sib Connection
JCC of Mid-Westchester : 999 Wilmot Road, Scarsdale, NY  

For ages 6+, this program is a support group for children and adolescents coping with issues related to having a sibling with a developmental disability.  Participants can share, explore feelings, and learn in a safe environment.  

Wednesdays 4-5PM
September 11, 2019 to May 13, 2020
No program on 10/9, 12/25, 1/1, 2/19, 4/8, and 4/15

Mara Roberge
(914) 472-3300 Ext. 361

We are here to help you with IVP (Individual Vacation Plans). We start with a free consultation in order to find out about your family's specific needs and desires. We ask about the special guest. What are their special needs and interests? What are their strengths and their challenges? What are their potential trigger points? What sensory and special diet issues need to be considered? This enables us to develop their own unique Autism Passport (our document that is loosely based upon Learner Snapshot by Judy Marks and Brenda Smith-Myles). We also ask about you and the other family members. What are your dreams and desires for an ideal vacations? What do you want to do with your Respite Time? We look at all of the issues that give you problems in traveling with autism and help you find the optimal means to resolve them.  

(203) 750-0000


135 West 20th Street, 5th Floor
New York, NY  10011

Since 1979, Sprout's travel program is dedicated to helping individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities grow through challenging and safe travel experiences and social activities.  Operating close to one hundred domestic and international trips every year, Sprout provides its participants an array of travel opportunities in the company of their peers, and with the supervision and support of our exceptional Sprout Leaders.  We offer a wide variety of trip options including ever popular destinations like Lake George, Cape Cod, Atlantic City, Orlando, Virginia Beach, and Washington D.C.  Special theme trips have included Baseball Hall of Fame, amusement park trips and cruises.  Through the years, Sprout has offered international travel to cities in Germany, Italy, France, Spain, the Netherlands, Mexico, and many other exciting destinations. 
In addition to selecting trips listed in our annual vacation brochure, Sprout also offers a Custom Design Program for agencies to tailor a trip to the specific needs and interests of their group.  It is the perfect way to accommodate the schedule, enhanced care requirements, and budgetary concerns for your travelers.  You can select the dates, length of trip and destination - and we will arrange the rest!  Contact us today for more information or for a trip proposal.

Raya Harris
Sprout Program Director
(212) 222-9575

Families may want to check with their local Parks and Recreation Department to see what programs they have available for children with special needs. Below is a list of the Parks and Recreation Departments for each city/town:

18 Center St
Ardsley, NY 10502
15 Bedford Road
Armonk, NY 10504
425 Cherry St
Bedford Hills, NY 10507
48 Macy Rd
Briarcliff Manor, NY 10510
200 Pondfield Rd
Bronxville, NY 10708
914-337-6500 x100  
200 S Greeley Ave
Chappaqua, NY 10514
1 Heady St.
Cortlandt Manor, NY 10567
1 Van Wyck St
Croton-on-Hudson, NY 10520
112 Main St.
Dobbs Ferry, NY 10522
40 Mill Road
Eastchester, NY 10709
11 Olympic Lane
Ardsley, NY 10502
1 Heineman Place
Harrison, NY 10528
Temp Location: 7 Farragut Ave
Hastings-on-Hudson, NY 10706
71 Main St
Irvington, NY 10533
Larchmont Village Hall
120 Larchmont Ave
Larchmont, NY 10538
914-834-6230 ext 6 
65 Old Bedford Rd
Goldens Bridge, NY 10526
740 W Boston Post Rd
Mamaroneck, NY 10543
104 Main St
Mt Kisco, NY 10549
1 S Roosevelt Square# 3
Mt Vernon, NY 10550
515 North Ave
New Rochelle, NY 10801
270 Titicus Road
North Salem, NY 10560
Joseph G. Caputo Community Center
95 Broadway
Ossining, NY 10562
20 5th Ave
Pelham, NY 10803
350 N Main St
Port Chester, NY 10573
179 Westchester Ave
Pound Ridge, NY 10576
1001 Post Rd
Scarsdale, NY 10583
28 Beekman Ave
Sleepy Hollow, NY 10591
Somers Parks and Recreation
Reis Park
Rte 139
Somers, NY 10589
West Main St
PO Box 292
Tarrytown, NY 10591
71 Columbus Ave
Tuckahoe, NY 10707
85 Gedney Way
White Plains, NY 10605
Yonkers Department of Parks, Recreation and Conservation
285 Nepperhan Ave.
Yonkers, NY 10701
If you are not receiving this listing directly and would like to be placed on our email list, please contact Lee Englander, Program Director, Autism Center
 914-761-0600 x2228 or

WJCS Westchester Jewish Community Services
845 North Broadway, White Plains, New York 10603
Copyright © 2020 Westchester Jewish Community Services, All rights reserved.

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