Welcome to Times Will Tell, the weekly podcast from The Times of Israel. This week, we’re speaking with Bryan Friedland, an actor on the autism spectrum who recently participated in Kan 11 reality show, “Tnu L’avod,” (“Let Us Work”).
The show, which aired in August, comprises four episodes about nine people with neurological and cognitive differences. All nine want to integrate into the Israeli workplace, and engage in a months-long process to find their way toward jobs and acceptance in Israeli society.
Friedland, who appears in the fourth episode, speaks frankly with us about the process of participating in the show, which followed him as he worked for months with a social worker and coach to figure out which jobs best suit his skills.
More importantly, he said, the process helped him navigate the complicated emotional and cognitive challenges of his life, along with his desire for acceptance and a life of meaning.
Friedland, who lives in a Jerusalem group home, has spent the past 11 years working at Shekel, an organization for people with special needs, where he created candles in a protected workshop.
He’s also an experienced actor and singer, and has performed extensively in musicals and plays for local community theater groups, which led to a new spate of work as a playacting tour guide for the Montefiore windmill tourist site in Jerusalem.
Friedland appeared in a fifth and final update episode of “Tnu L’avod” on September 2, which featured all nine participants, showing where they are six months after the reality show ended.
Check out this previous Times Will Tell episode: