NOT SO long ago, families that had a member with intellectual and developmental disabilities hid that person from the public eye. Happily, today there are so many pro - grams and projects for children and adults with developmental disabilities that they are no longer hidden, but encouraged to utilize their potential and be useful to them - selves and others. The question that still exists is what happens to such people when parents and siblings are no longer capable or around to care for them. A seminar offering possible solutions will be hosted by ESRA on Sunday, November 16 at 7:30 p.m. at Yad Lebanim, 147 Ahusa in Ra’anana.Among the speakers will be Maurice Cohen and Alex Daulby who each have daughters with severe disabilities, Robin Kanichowsky , a family therapist and social worker who specializes in rehabilitation, and Yosefa Harpaz , a clinical social worker, family therapist and coordinator of rehabilitation and autism in the Ra’anana Municipality’s Department of Welfare and Social Services, and a probation officer for people with different disabilities, safeguarding their welfare, needs and rights. The topics for discussion will be: How to ensure the best care and support for disabled offspring once the parents are deceased; a parent’s perspective of residential care; a review of how the system works in Israel; and the safeguarding of welfare needs and rights.■ ORDINARILY, AMONG those greeting attendees at the annual Battle of Beersheba commemoration – which is co-hosted by the Australian Embassy, the Beersheba Municipality and the Pratt Foundation (which funded Beersheba’s Park of the Australian Soldier) – would be Pratt Foundation Israel director Peter Adler . But Adler had other things on his mind last Friday, as his daughter-in-law had just presented him with a grandson. At the ceremony, Beersheba Deputy Mayor Tal El-Al, in greeting Australian Ambassador Dave Sharma, noted that during Operation Protective Edge, Sharma had spent days and nights in the area, proving yet again Australia’s enduring friendship for a period of almost a century.■ THE AWARDING of degrees usually takes place at the end of the academic year, but the Peres Academic Center in Rehovot decided to bring in the new academic year with a bang and last week awarded degrees to 800 graduates at a festive gathering at the Charles Bronfman Auditorium in Tel Aviv in the presence of Rehovot Mayor Rahamim Malul and Drorit Wertheim, the head of the friends of PAC. Also in attendance were faculty members Prof. Malka Margalit , head of Behavioral Sciences, Dr. Aaron Amzaleg , head of the bachelor's degree course in Business Administration, Prof. Asher Maoz , dean of the Law School, Dr. Shuki Friedman , Law School lecturer, Dr. Oranit Davidson, dean of students, former tourism minister and MK Ruhama Avraham, members of the center’s executive board and members of the Friends of PAC. The degree certificates were distributed by PAC president Ron Shapiro and PAC chairwoman Ofra Elul, aided by faculty members. The entertainment was provided by Ninette Tayeb, Illy Botner, Harel Skaat, Marina Maximillian Blumin, Yuval Dayan and other performers who all sang songs made popular by the late Arik Einstein. Shimon Peres did not attend, because he was out of the country.■ MANY LARGE companies have a policy of giving back to the community, and they get their employees to participate in various community projects including acting as mentors to high school students. But Osem has surpassed many others with its announcement last week that it will open a large ice cream factory in Arad – in fact the largest ice cream factory in the Middle East – to provide employment for a large number of people who have lost their jobs with the closure of the Arad Towel Factory and the closure or downsizing of other factories in Arad and other southern towns and cities. The estimated investment in the ice cream plant will be around NIS 200 million, 20-25 percent of which is from a government grant. Finance Minister Yair Lapid hopes to persuade other companies to follow Osem’s lead.■ DESPITE NUMEROUS reports of friction between Shas leader Arye Deri and Eli Yishai , Deri announced last weekend that he wants to work in full cooperation with Yishai. Speaking at a Shas convention in Safed attended by all the faction members of the party and all Shas municipal council members, Deri described Yishai as the best field operative in the party, thanked him for his 13 years of leadership and promised him a free hand if they work together. Yishai said he appreciated Deri’s acknowledgment and that he was willing to work with him in harmony, thus quelling speculation about a split in Shas.■ NUMEROUS VOLLEYBALL players gathered on the Gordon Beach in Tel Aviv last Saturday to play in a memorial championship match in honor of Lt.Roi Peles , a member of the Nahal Brigade who was killed by an antitank missile in Gaza in Operation Protective Edge. Peles was an excellent volleyball player, and loved the sport since childhood. The memorial games were held on what would have been his 22nd birthday, and his parents were on hand to cheer on the players. Peles loved to play volleyball on the beach and when he was killed his friends immediately put up a makeshift monument on the sand, where everyone who had ever watched him play could pay their respects.