Friends of AKIM USA

Culture, Education, Leisure and Sport

AKIM Israel encourages intellectually and developmentally disabled persons with native talents to express themselves in drama, painting, singing and dance. A few AKIM’s theater, dance and choir groups have given performances in Israel and participated in several events abroad.

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Culture

Stage and Plastic Art are being used as an important learning “tool” to promote the full inclusion and participation in the community of the developmentally disabled persons and to promote acceptance.

  • Theater shows, followed by a discussion with the audience in the venue, have become a very popular “tool” to explore AKIM Israel’s message of “inclusion” and self advocacy.

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  • Plastic Art Exhibitions have become another popular and very successful component in AKIM Israel’s “Inclusion” vision efforts.

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Education

Promoting “mainstreaming” of positive attitudes toward people with developmental and intellectual disabilities is AKIM Israel educational effort’s main goal.

As mentioned above, Stage and Plastic Art activities are the best “tool” to integrate AKIM’s educational effort into daily life in Israel.

Sport

A variety of sport activities are offered to all ages. These activities include:

  • Long range nature walks,
  • Regional Sport days, and
  • Pétanque (Boules) game league.

AKIM participates in the development and expansion of sports activities for the intellectually disabled population in Israel. There are about 3,800 athletes who train and compete in Special Olympic sports such as athletics, aquatics, kayaks, judo, bikes, basketball, bowling, bocce, tennis and table tennis.

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Leisure Activities:

A variety of leisure activities is operated by AKIM Israel:

  • Afternoon Leisure Clubs  which provide extra-curricular activities for disabled individuals – of all ages – who live at home, in protected apartments, or group homes.
  • Annual “protected” vacation for 1,000 disabled persons working in all working “frames”.
  • Summer camps for 200 kids.

Our trained staff has developed a wide variety of after-school activities, which are adapted for children and teenagers with special needs. Some of the programs include kayaking, dancing, swimming, painting, sculpture, drama and dance. These activities give parents a needed break and provide young children and teens with opportunities to develop skills and make friends in a supportive environment.

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Public Library Activities:

Children 12 years and older, and adults with mild to moderate intellectual disabilities, meet weekly in groups of eight for two-hour sessions at public libraries throughout Israel. Specially adapted story hours and video screenings provide a stimulating learning environment.

What's New at AKIM

Yossi Zvi, was elected as the new chairman of Friends of Akim Israel. Zvi has been in senior management positions in the business sector for the past 30 years and has headed a real estate and mall management company in recent years. “When I was asked to accept the position, I did not hesitate. I felt that now was my time to contribute and allow people to live a better life, “said Yossi Zvi at the meeting.
In 2020 Akim opened 7 new apartments in the community: in Kfar Saba, Karmiel, Yavne, and Rehovot.
AKIM Israel serves as guardian for more than 1,500 persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities, regardless of their faith, ethnic background, age or sex
Rabbi Dr. Benyamin (Benny) Lau, who was elected on Sunday, June 20th, 2021, to be the new Chairman of Akim Israel, unanimously by the organization’s General Assembly members. Rabbi Benny Lau will serve as Chairman of Akim in place of Admiral (R) Ami Ayalon, who served in the position for 11 years, years in which he led significant processes in the organization, from establishing it as a human-focused organization, working to hear the voices of people with intellectual disabilities and to lead actions of the policy change and assimilation of positive attitudes towards people with intellectual disabilities and their inclusion into Israeli society.