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Press Release

Innovative Demonstration Programs Offered About Living Well with Parkinson's Disease

WALTHAM, MA (November 24, 2015) - Parkinson’s disease patients, their family members, and caregivers are invited to a demonstration of an innovative and highly acclaimed Parkinson’s Dance program. The program will be held on Sunday, December 6 at the Danvers Community YMCA, 34 Pickering Street, Danvers. The program is presented by Jewish Family & Children’s Service and is available to everyone regardless of faith or religious background.

The Charlotte & Richard Okonow Parkinson’s Family Support Program of Jewish Family & Children’s Service (JF&CS) has been offering education and arts-based therapeutic programming to people with PD and their care givers for the past eight years. If there is sufficient community interest and need, JF&CS will plan to offer the Parkinson’s group dance program on a regular basis on the North Shore. 

The demonstration and informational session will offer families on the North Shore the opportunity to experience this unique and proven approach to improving quality of life while living with Parkinson’s disease. The demonstration session will focus on how engagement with the arts promotes health for all of us as we age and on the needs of care partners of people with Parkinson’s. The dance program is designed for success whether completed seated or standing. According to Nancy Mazonson, MS OTR/L, Director of the JF&CS Okonow Parkinson’s Family Support Program, JF&CS is considering expanding some of its programs and services for Parkinson’s patients to the North Shore. “This program has been growing at our Waltham office for eight years, with a very loyal, enthusiastic group of participants.” 

David Leventhal, New York based director of Dance for PD for the Mark Morris Dance Group has said, “The Parkinson’s Dance program at JF&CS exemplifies the best vision of what a community that dances together can achieve--engagement, creativity, confidence, exploration and enjoyment. Every time I visit the program, I'm profoundly reminded of the quality of your approach and the depth of your commitment to foster life-long learning and artistic expression in the face of challenge. My greatest wish is for everyone to take a little bit of what happens at JF&CS into their own lives and their own communities.” 

Pre-registration for this free program is recommended due to space limitations. To attend, please email or call 781-693- 5069. Please indicate how many people will attend.

About Jewish Family & Children’s Service
For 150 years, Jewish Family & Children’s Service has provided exceptional human service and health care programs, guided by Jewish traditions of social responsibility, compassion, and respect for all members of the community. With an integrated network of more than 40 programs serving communities throughout Eastern and Central Massachusetts, JF&CS helps people of all faiths and backgrounds meet life’s challenges. JF&CS programs focus on serving particularly vulnerable populations including children and adults with disabilities or mental illness, new mothers and their infants, seniors living with chronic conditions, and people experiencing financial crisis, hunger, or domestic abuse. For more information, please visit

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