The Joel Schwartz Memorial Hockey Tournament

Tournament to raise proceeds for the Reena Foundation, providing services and programs to people with developmental disabilities.

Published: March 4th 2011
in Culture » Society

Joel Schwartz

The Joel Schwartz Memorial Hockey Tournament (JSMHT), a grassroots charity in Toronto, will be holding its inaugural tournament fundraiser on Sunday March 13, 2011 at Chesswood Arena. 100% of the proceeds will go to the CIE Birthright Israel –Reena Participant Program.


JSMHT was created in memory and honor of Joel Schwartz, who tragically passed away on March 3, 2009 at the age of 25. Diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome, Joel was a client of the Reena Foundation, an organization that has been a pioneer in providing unique services and programs to people with developmental disabilities. It envisages a world were people with developmental difficulties such as Asperger Syndrome, autism, and Down Syndrome are afforded the ability to achieve a better quality of life, independence, dignity, and freedom of choice.


Two months prior to his passing, Joel was able to participate in a CIE Birthright Israel Trip with support of a Reena volunteer. Being the remarkable young man that he was, Joel left an indelible impression on his Birthright Israel group. He was a true inspiration to all who met him.


JSMHT is an initiative created to support the CIE Birthright Israel-Reena Program. The program enables young people with developmental disabilities to fully participate in all that is offered on a CIE Birthright trip. With the aid of a Reena “shadow” (an individual trained to deal with the special needs of someone with developmental disabilities), program participants are completely integrated with non-disabled peers. Reena must fund these shadows. Money raised will be donated to the Joel Schwartz Endowment Fund at Reena. This endowment ensures that shadow participants can be sent with Reena clients on CIE Birthright Israel trips.


For more information regarding the Joel Schwartz Memorial Hockey Tournament, visit www.




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