PHOTOS BY BI LL HANSEN
JILL DAVIDSON SKLAR STAFF WRITER
Sara and Yah Al-Azem
get cookies from
Dr. Sally Burton
hen Howard Serlin was growing up, living with an emotionally dis-
turbed brother was a hassle.
"It was not easy, needless to say," said Mr. Serlin, now a board
member of Kadima, a local Jewish support service for adults with
mental illness. "In addition to the normal sibling rivalry, there was
the fact that I more or less had to take care of him and allow him to
As Mr. Serlin aged, the hassle gave way to feelings of concern for
his aging parents as well as his brother's welfare. His brother was
placed into a mental-health facility at Clinton Valley and then into
a group home run by Kadima. The brother now lives on his own,
occasionally assisted by Kadima.
"Growing up, there were things I had to do that I wouldn't have
had to do if my brother had been normal," he said. "But frankly, I
prefer to dwell on the positive aspects, like Kadima."
Mr. Serlin shared his experiences Wednesday during a panel dis-
cussion featuring three community leaders who grew up with dis-
abled siblings. Sponsored by the Agency for Jewish Education, the
discussion was the second portion of "The Family Circle: My Broth-
er's Keeper?" a three-part series for families and friends living with
people with disabilities.
The Family Circle, in its fifth year, has expanded from a half-
day event to one morning of lecture and workshops and two later,
follow up discussions.
"(The Family Circle) has always been a one-shot deal," said Bay