1391 Martine Ave. Scotch Plains, NJ 07076
Ph: 908-889-8800

Special Needs

In our ongoing effort to create a warm, welcoming and inclusive environment for all our members, we provide support for families with special needs.  We have programs, activities, resources, referrals and workshops and a variety of other support.

For more information about Special Needs programming within the larger Greater MetroWest community, click here.

Learn to Babysit for Children with Special Needs

At JCC MetroWest, 760 Northfield Avenue, West Orange
Sundays • November 15, 22, December 6 and 13 from 3:00 - 5:00 p.m. • December 20 from 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. (this session will include 6-hour CPR/First Aid training)
Open to teens in grades 8 - 12
During this five-week course, teens will be trained by a special needs professional through workshops, videos and meetings.  Students will be certified in CPR and First Aid, with additional topics including: disability awareness, rights and responsibilities, child development and behavioral challenges, communicating with the child with special needs, modifying games/activities, handling emergencies and more.  A list of teens that have completed the course can then be shared with families in the community seeking childcare.  For more information or to register, contact Rebecca Wanatick at 973-929-3129 or rwanatick@jfedgmw.org.   

JCC Shadow Program

If you would like your child to participate in a JCC program and feel that he/she may need special accommodations, please contact JCC Assistant Executive Director Mike Goldstein at mgoldstein@jccnj.org.  The JCC will evaluate each program and child to try to successfully match your child with an appropriate shadow volunteer.  We will look at each child on an individual basis to determine need and appropriateness of program.  Please note that there will be an additional fee for a shadow if we are unable to provide a trained volunteer.

Camp Yachad Shadow Program

Whenever possible, Camp Yachad serves children with disabilities in the same groups as all the other campers.  If you are interested in summer camp for your special needs child, please contact Camp Co-Director Mike Goldstein, at 908-889-8800 x218 or mgoldstein@jccnj.org. Read more about our Camp Yachad Shadow Program.

If you are a teen looking for special need training and volunteer opportunities, consider being a part of the JCC's Teen Action Service Corps (T.A.S.C.).  Click here to learn more.


For questions about any Aquatics programs or to register, please contact Kim Koza, Aquatics Director, at 908-889-8800 x219 or kkoza@jccnj.org.

Private Swim Lessons for Children with Special Needs (all ages)

This one-on-one 30-minute aquatics class, taught by our trained swim instructors, is ideal for children with special needs. Lessons are adapted to each child's specific needs and limitations. for more information, please contact Kiz Koza. #24665-01 Single Lesson: Member: $35/session, Community Participant: $45/session #24665-02 Five Private Lesson Package: Member: $175, Community Participant: $225 #24665-03 Ten Private Lesson Package: Member: $300, Community Participant: $400

Private Services as Requested Adaptive Sports with Throwback Sports

Individual or group sessions are scheduled to encourage happy and active children. In each Throwback Sports session, focus is on the Personal Play Goals that gradually allow for an increased teamwork concept while building up core physical skills. The key to all this is having fun. Children work towards understanding the concepts, strategies and significance of engaging with others in sports play such as baseball, football and basketball.  Facilitated by Mike Cohen and the Throwback Sports Team.  For more information, please email mgoldstein@jccnj.org

Adaptive Sports Camp for Children with Special Needs

(rising kindergartners - rising 4th graders)
In partnership with Throwback Sports
Open to the Community
Start your child's summer out strong!  Build skills, confidence and ability through sports, exercise and physical activity.  A 2:1 camper to staff ration allows instructors to cater to each child's level of fitness, skill and ability.  Attention is given to help campers work toward understanding sports play concepts and strategies.  There is also an emphasis on the importance and significance of engaging with others in sports play.  Throwback Sports has been present in the NYC-area special needs community since 2003.  Their guiding principal supports the overall development of a child so they believe in helping develop socially as well as physically competent children in a nurturing environment.

Special Olympics Gymnastics Training with the Scotch Plains All Stars at the JCC

Saturdays • 2:30 - 3:30 p.m. • beginning October 10 • classes will continue weekly throughout the year until the Special Olympics Summer Games from June 10 - 12.
Scotch Plains All Stars Gymnastics is designed for female athletes to learn and practice basic gymnastic skills.  Athletes also have an opportunity to participate in local community events and competitions when appropriate.  For more information, contact Susanne Yip Molnar at yip217@gmail.com