RAISE director joins Shalom Orlando


October 28, 2022

Rachel Slavkin

The Roth Family JCC auditorium was filled to capacity at the annual RAISE (Recognizing Abilities and Inclusion of Special Employees) Meet & Greet in September with nine new employees and their families, job coaches, and members of the Jewish community who support RAISE. The growing success of the program was evident as Founder and Director Loren London shared that as the program has expanded, Shalom Orlando hired RAISE Director of Employment & Education Rachel Slavkin, M.Ed., to be the RAISE Inclusion Director on staff.

"It is such a moment in time to have Rachel begin to write a new chapter of inclusion at Shalom Orlando!," said London. "She brings to this first-of-its-kind position her professional background, jaw-dropping energy, broad experience, passion, commitment and an understanding of our Jewish community which will help lead, grow and expand RAISE."

Slavkin started her new job on Sept. 6 managing RAISE locally and she is in the process of expanding the RAISE program in Central Florida. Shalom Orlando CEO Keith Dvorchik noted that Shalom Orlando hopes to see RAISE scale up to double and triple the number of employees to broaden its impact.

"To do so, RAISE needs more job coaches and more partnering organizations who are willing to have one of our employees work three hours a week, paid by RAISE," Slavkin stated. "Additionally, we are working on expanding RAISE to Southwest Orlando as well as looking for RAISE on the Road pilot sites to replicate our program model in other cities." 

"Before RAISE can have employees in Southwest Orlando, we have to find job coaches from Southwest Orlando," London reiterated. "We have actual jobs and support from [Rosen JCC director] Reuben Romirowsky. We are just actively in need of volunteers from that end of town. If we find a few by January, we will be able to place two employees in Southwest Orlando."

Slavkin is also Shalom Orlando's internal professional to assist with its inclusion efforts throughout all its programming, from the ECLC to Camp, to afterschool, to expansion into underserved areas like Lake Nona, Winter Garden, Lake Mary, and Oviedo.

"We are so excited to welcome Rachel Slavkin to the Shalom Orlando team," said Dvorchik. "As our Director of Inclusion/RAISE, Rachel brings her decades of experience working with people with disabilities to enhance our work.  Inclusion is a key part of Shalom Orlando and we are excited to have her help us improve and grow in our Richard S. Adler Early Childhood Center, in Camp J, Shayna's Village, and throughout the community.  We are so lucky to add her and her skills for the benefit of Jewish Orlando."


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