For some organizations accessibility is just something that eventually will become the law of the land. For others, it may be a socially acceptable way to be. Here at HaShem’s House, accessibility is an integrated part of our fabric. Our cantor, Rev. Orah, is visually handicapped and requires the latest in computer technology to make the computer a viable part of her life, as she is a viable part of ours here at HaShem’s House. She is helping us write a curriculum so that our Seminary will be able to include students with all manner of special needs and accommodations. Rabbi Raine herself uses Dragon Speak to assist her. She has carpal tunnel syndrome. We do not see this as a hindrance. We see it as part of our mission to be totally inclusive.
A part of HaShem’s House history:
A few years ago a student came to see me about ordination. It seemed that his younger brother, who the family wanted to be a part of that day, just like any other person, was deaf. The student asked, on behalf of his parents, if they could hire signers for that special day. And they did. It was so beautiful to watch the artistry that was the two signers who came to the temple that day. As his brother watched, and “heard”, my student was ordained. We were all moved that day. And, even though I had taught many differently-abled students during my long public school career, I don’t think I really understood the true nature of providing for all of HaShem’s children until that day.
We, at HaShem’s House, are continually working to make our “house” as inclusive, loving and caring, as we can. This desire to add to our curriculums, our services and our out-reach propels us to include an accessible website as well. It is written in the Old Testament, “come before HaShem with great rejoicing, come before HaShem with song and instrument, make a joyful noise unto HaShem.” We not only believe that, we intend to make it true for everyone. Everyone will be able to “make” a joyful noise unto HaShem and everyone will be able to “hear” it and “see” it! That’s what true accessibility is.
This site was created as part of the AIR-Austin 2012 competition sponsored by Knowbility for the purpose of designing and creating handi-accessible websites. We are proud to present this site, which includes the latest techniques and technologies for making this website and multimedia content usable by those with limited or no sight, hearing impaired, or with mobility / dexterity constraints.