Social distancing, masks and other coronavirus regulations couldn’t break the spirit at ADI all year long and this year’s Purim celebrations at ADI Jerusalem and ADI Negev-Nahalat Eran brought that home more than ever. Contests, parties and celebrations abounded – all in keeping with our strict corona protocols to safeguard our immunocompromised residents with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Before dressing up for Purim, it was time to dress up the masks that have become part of our routine attire. All ADI branches participated in a mask-decorating contest, trimming, embellishing and painting both the small surgical masks and larger face masks. The decorated surgical masks were put on display in all ADI centers, and the larger face masks were photographed and displayed in a unique exhibit open to the general public at Jerusalem’s The Station.
At ADI Jerusalem, residents and students learned the story of Megillat Esther using sensory books created especially for that purpose. Other students unable to hold the books in their hands utilized state-of-the-art eye tracking equipment to turn the pages of their computerized Megillah books, ensuring that everyone was able to learn about Queen Esther and Mordechai.
In keeping with Purim tradition, vocational workshop participants packaged their own Mishloach Manot for sale and for personal distribution. Tal, a long-time resident of ADI Jerusalem, made a special trip to Jerusalem’s City Hall to personally deliver his own package to the mayor’s office.
The two weeks leading up to Purim and the day of Purim itself saw numerous parties and celebrations, including the happy return of ADI volunteers, now allowed to enter the building after being properly vaccinated.
Beginning with the first day of the month of Adar, game-themed costumes, partying and celebration at ADI Negev-Nahalat Eran took off and accelerated as Purim got closer, ending in an exciting outdoor happening for all students and residents.
Participants in the ADI Ofakim Vocational Workshop had their own Purim party, arriving at work in a variety of interesting and original costumes. Costumes notwithstanding, after taking part of the day to celebrate Purim, the dedicated employees at the vocational center sat down to work, making for quite a site as they manned their tables decked out in Purim finery.
Fun as it was, we all hope that by next year masks will be relegated to Purim and we will once again be able to see the full smiles of staff, volunteers, residents and friends all year long.