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Motorized wheelchair can help JFS volunteer

By Jackie Demaline • • December 15, 2010
Shelley Shapiro's massive stroke in 1996 slowed her down but it didn't stop her.

Her left arm and leg are useless, but the former social worker and one-time ocean kayaker and rock climber, now 60, found a horseback riding class for the disabled and even managed a tandem parachute jump a few years ago.

A fall in her Northside apartment in August broke her hip and her femur. It's been a long road back but after three months in rehab at a nursing home, Shapiro can walk a short distance with the assistance of a four-prong cane. She moved to an assisted living facility at the end of November.

Shapiro is a people person. While at the nursing home, she helped seniors with their banking, edited papers for students and even played bingo cards for patients with low vision and Alzheimer's.


She's trying to bounce back again but to do so she needs "to have my world opened up."

A motorized wheelchair would make an enormous difference to Shapiro, whose world is "geographically small." It's a struggle to get from place to place using only her right hand to power her chair.

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For Shapiro to go everywhere that is disabled-accessible would mean "doing some of the things I used to do, be in the places I liked to be."


Equipped with a wicked wit and a streak of independence, Shapiro is "somebody who loves words" and she longs to go to the library, even though reading can be a struggle - just holding a book fatigues her. Shapiro has taught English as a Second Language (ESL) in the past and she's eager to volunteer to teach ESL with Jewish Family Service.

More than anything, she wants access to a laptop "to be connected to the world, to meet people," but that means getting to a computer lab.

A motorized chair would mean Shapiro could take advantage of Access bus service and possibly even find work and bring in income.


"And I'm going to learn to sew one-handed if it's the last thing I do."

Read the Cincinnati Enquirer story

Director of Aging and Caregiver Services discusses elderly housing at local conference

Ann Sutton Burke, Jewish Family Service Director of Aging and Caregiver Services, was featured in this CityBeat article about the Sustainable Hamilton County Conference. Ann was on the panel and discussed the importance of Aging in Place. Article

The Mothers Circle for moms who aren't Jewish raising Jewish children

September 27, 2010

Cincinnati.  Interfaith relationships in the Jewish community are becoming more common, with many mothers of other religious backgrounds raising Jewish children. These women can now receive educational support and guidance through The Mothers Circle, a free program offered by Jewish Family Service. To participate, mothers do not have to be affiliated with a Jewish institution or have any prior knowledge of Judaism. more

JFS holds Annual Meeting

August 29, 2010

Cincinnati.  The Jewish Family Service Annual Meeting was filled with news…a new Board of Directors, a new address, a new logo and branding, a resolution for a new merger, and a dedication to its new office space.  more