“I have been deeply impressed by the devotion, high professional standards, care and warmth and individual attention that each student at the organization receives…and by its constant aspiration towards advancement and improvement – all carried out with the purpose of providing the best possible care to the students.”

Michal Hertzog, Wohl Foundation.

Marriage Programme

At Ohel Sarah we believe that every person deserves to experience and enjoy married life. Our unique One Heart Marriage Programme has been developed by the professional and caring staff of Ohel Sarah in order to support, guide and help individuals with cognitive disabilities to get married and to establish a home together.

This programme began because several parents of high functioning cognitively disabled adults asked us for help. They told us that their children watched longingly as their siblings got married and now they want to follow in their footsteps.

Ohel Sarah picked up the challenge and has set up a team of professionals, including individual case managers, psychologists, social workers and marriage counsellors to lead this project.  Throughout their engagement period, the couple prepares for married life – both individually and together. They are taught time and money management, housekeeping, shopping and menu planning, open communication and interpersonal skills, intimacy, budgeting … in other words how to live together as a happy married couple.

The success of this programme has now spread across the country, and a similar Arab-Israeli organization in Tamra, has signed up to receive coaching from our experts on how to advise and help their special needs couples through the marriage process.

Ohel Sarah finances all this pre-marriage counselling and very often pays also for the wedding itself. Once the couple is married, they continue to receive support and guidance from Ohel Sarah. We also help couples find employment in local businesses which helps with their confidence and success in life.

Ohel Sarah has so far successfully enrolled seven couples in this programme. We have a long waiting list including couples who are already married but need post marital support.

By the end of the year, we hope to be supporting 8 married couples. Now that we have so many, we are changing the infrastructure so that they can become a ‘community’. The couples host meals for each other, go out together and attend joint workshops.

Some figures:

The total cost of a three year program including pre-marriage and post-marriage support is

£27,000 per couple, i.e. £9,000 per year. And the cost of a wedding is usually between £6,000-9,000.

If you would be interested in twinning your wedding with a couple from our ‘One Hearts’ programme or to find other ways that you could help support the programme, please click here or be in contact with info@ohel-sarah.org.uk

If you would like to donate to the programme please click here

Click here to see the article on the Smashing the Glass Blog or the recent JC article here.