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Manijeh Nehorai: Shattering a Stigma

URL: http://www.jewishjournal.com/mensches/article/manijeh_nehorai_shattering_a_stigma_20100106

Nearly two decades ago, many Iranian Jewish families in Southern California would not have dared to publicly acknowledge having children with mental disabilities, let alone bring those children out of their homes. A community-wide social stigma existed, and parents whose children had special needs feared they would be looked down upon and that their other healthy children would not be able to find spouses within the community. Then, 15 years ago, Manijeh N. Nehorai, an Iranian Jewish social worker, quietly became the first person in the community to begin chipping away at this taboo through her volunteer efforts.

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