Friendship Circle Northern Virginia launched in January 2022 by Rabbi Sholom and Chanie Deitsch in loving memory of their daughter, Cyrel Liba, who lived with severe challenges until she was 22 years old. Since her passing, the Deitsches are committed to providing individuals with disabilities the friendships they deserve.

What We Do

The Friendship Circle facilitates friendships between Jewish individuals with disabilities and spirited volunteers. Through a wide range of social, educational, and accessible Jewish programs, the two share fun and love building a friendship that deeply enriches both their lives. Through these friendships, the Friendship Circle also strengthens the broader Jewish community.

How We Do It

Our core program is Friends@Home where we pair teen volunteers ages 14-18 with differently abled teens, ages 5-18, to spend time with them on a regular basis. All teens are interviewed prior to being matched to gauge interests, location, and schedule. Once paired, teen volunteers attend orientation before meeting their differently abled friend and attend our educational workshops throughout the year. In the true spirit of inclusion, all of our teens make a friend their age and our teen volunteers also gain a new perspective on what it means to live chesed, compassion.

If you are 13-18 years old and would like to be a teen volunteer, click here.

If you are a family with a child with a disability age 5 and up, click here.