ARTS THERAPY – JUBILATION CREATIONS – FOUNDED BY: DR. JUDITH WEINSTEIN MD
A serious crafter from the age of 8, Dr. Judy Weinstein, MD, is a Board Certified Diagnostic Radiologist with fellowship training in Invasive Procedures Radiology. Having practiced medicine for almost 10 years, in late 1996, her entire life was abruptly changed by the development of a severe work-related nerve injury and chronic pain disease, which eventually spread to her entire nervous system. She went from the busy, full life of a physician and active woman to total disability and severe chronic pain. The injury caused such extensive damage that, among other things, she essentially lost the use of her upper body, hands and arms.
Over almost 7 years, Dr. Weinstein began the long and difficult process of overcoming the grief and huge losses she suffered from her own disability. In 2000, Dr. Judy and her husband adopted 2 year old Lilia Renée from Russia. Almost 3 years later, Dr. Judyvery gradually regained partial use of her hands, immediately turned to nurture her creative self, and fostered the same love of creative endeavors in her very talented, artistic daughter Lilia, as well. Once Dr. Judy discovered beading, she combined the yarns she loved from knitting with her new love of beads, and the idea for her own mixed media jewelry-crafts store, Jubili Beads & Yarns®, (an acronym for Judy, Bill, & Lilia), was born.
From a tiny rental to her current historical building with 2 floors and 4,100 sq. ft, Dr. Weinstein, (aka “The Bead Doctor”), expanded the class offerings to include extensive choices in mixed media jewelry-making techniques, fiber arts, needlework, and flame work glass bead-making and metal smithing. With so many customers telling Dr. Judy how inspiring her story was, “The Bead Doctor” began to realize how powerfully healing, renewing, and uplifting are the countless wonderful joys we get from expressing our creativity. Thus began her goal, to welcome special needs/disabled individuals to Jubili, so that they too, could experience the empowering joys of their own creativity.
The first Jubilation Creations® Special Needs Arts & Crafts classes began in late 2008 with 1 student. Now with a total of 25 class enrollees who attend over 50 hours of arts & crafts classes per week, we also offer a weekly group class in special needs yoga as well. In addition, Jubilation Creations® is now a 501(c)3 NJ Non Profit Corporation, a status that was granted by the IRS in October 2010.
In the retail store, we welcome individuals from several special needs schools and organizations, who come accompanied by a “job skills coach”. They learn a variety of job skills, such as labeling inventory, re-packaging, organizing, and counting. For many, these new skills have helped them obtain employment in other businesses. Dr. Weinstein is currently taking classes to develop increased services to this population; including skills evaluation, job skills training, and job placement; for those who would like to seek employment in creative fields.
With a large general activity room on the facility’s second floor, Jubilation Creations®, Inc. also hosts craft activity field trips from special needs schools and organizations. Responding to numerous parent requests both in NJ and PA, in the future, Jubilation Creations® hopes to bring our wonderful classes to other regions as local, on-site after-school classes for special needs individuals of all ages.
What began as a “new life” and personal inner healing endeavor for “Dr. Judy”, has blossomed into an ever-expanding program that is bringing joy and creativity to many others! Our passion is to continue to expand our reach, and bring “the joy of creativity without limits..” to as many budding special needs craft artists as we can!
Dr. Judy Weinstein, Founder/Director of Jubilation Creations®, Inc., can be reached via e mail at[email protected]
Article by: Judy Weinstein MD