Congregation Beth El’s Project Lev is a unique Religious School Program open to the Jewish Community for Children with Special Needs. Specifically, it is a program for children who are developmentally and/or physically challenged; children with autistic spectrum disorders, Fragile X Syndrome, Down Syndrome, Pervasive Developmental Disorder and children with cognitive, physical, social and emotional challenges. The students we serve are of all grade levels and are both verbal and non-verbal communicators. Launched in September 2003 with a grant from the Jewish Community Foundation of the Jewish Federation of Southern New Jersey, Project Lev is the only program of its kind and is open to all children in the Jewish Community. About 50 percent of their population comes from other synagogues in the community. Some require partial or full scholarship, which they readily provide. Their program has enriched not only the lives of our Project Lev children and their families, but also the lives of all those who are associated with the program, such as their cadre of volunteer student mentors. Their efforts have been nationally recognized by United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, they have been awarded the coveted Solomon Schechter Gold Award for excellence in the area of Special Needs.