WAE Center

The WAE Center: An adult day program focused on adaptive arts and personal growth

Founded in 2004 JSDD’s WAE (Wellness, Arts, Enrichment) Center is a holistic arts learning program for adults with developmental disabilities.

Dedicated to “Finding the Spark Within,” WAE’s focus is on the personal growth of our members. We believe in meeting individuals where they are and supporting them as they identify and achieve their personal goals. Moreover, by embracing these humanistic principles, WAE guides members in building a greater capacity to live a full life.

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The heart of WAE: relationships and community

WAE’s adaptive arts program began with the practice of three disciplines: fine arts, speaking circles, plus yoga and meditation. Subsequently, the program expanded to include pre-vocational offerings, cooking, music, creative writing, Judaic studies, and civics classes.

In addition, WAE offers opportunities for social engagement to foster independence. These include gallery and museum visits, art exhibits and their opening receptions, as well as the staging of productions on site and at public venues.

As members participate in WAE programs and events, wonderful things begin to happen. They develop strong community connections as they share life, develop friendships, and support one another. This community and these relationships are the heart of the WAE Center.

Passionate professionals, who work from a place of neutrality, facilitate WAE’s programs. They include visual artists, photographers, writers, yoga and meditation practitioners, musicians, and actors. Many are well-known in the NJ community and beyond. Student interns and volunteers augment this diverse, creative mix of talented individuals.

"They help you with your artwork. They help you with living. They teach you good values." – Daniel M

"I like everything about the WAE Center…I can be social here." – Kristen I

Day programs for the Community of Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDD)

Today as a New Jersey DDD provider, the WAE day habilitation program continues to rise to meet the needs of a wide variety of IDD community members.

While operating as an “adult day habilitation” provider we function as an “Adult School” where the interests of each member drive the classes offered. As members become attuned to their unique talents and grow their skill set, they learn to advocate for those interests. Each person’s starting point is unique, and JSDD’s WAE Center is committed to supporting each member on a lifelong journey to find the spark within every day.

Our Distinctive Approach

  • Dedication to the individual
  • Unconditional acceptance
  • Promoting self-expression
  • Meaningful life engagement / friendship
  • Embracing diversity in all aspects of our community
  • Inclusion/participation in the local communities
  • Working together for common goals
  • Promoting the sale of artwork created by members
  • Promoting employment through the development of art skills.
WAE Center Classes and Activities

Learn more about the WAE Center adult day program

The WAE Center is open to all adults with developmental disabilities who have the desire to participate in our dynamic, person-centered community. To learn more, contact us.

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Who we are

At JSDD, the expectations for quality extend beyond what services and supports may be available to what life fulfilling experiences are possible. Our philosophy supports the notion that there are no limits to those possibilities. We have developed opportunities over time through a dynamic process of establishing relationships with the agency’s residents and WAE Center members. Unexplored interests, ideas, prospects for learning, continuing education and creativity are constantly evolving and emerge as our remarkable staff and the people we support get to know each other and share experiences.

What we do

Ability is the focus of all efforts in supporting the men and women we serve. We are delighted and inspired each and every day by the insights, revelations and creative energy that emerges when respectful relationships for the gifts and talent of every individual are considered. Learning and creativity occur organically as people share themselves and develop friendships and help each other to grow.