Committee Members Get a Firsthand Look at Our Groundbreaking Work in Israel

In mid-March, a Federation delegation made up of Israel & Overseas Committee members and their spouses, as well as three Federation staff members, traveled to Israel to get an on-the-ground look at the programs we fund. Over the course of five jam-packed days, participants – including ten committee members – were wowed by the amazing work carried out by our diverse group of grantees. From the Olim Together program, which helps place Ethiopian immigrants in jobs related to their educational background, to the Shalom Hartman Institute, which promotes pluralism and Jewish identity, each of the programs we visited was an inspiration.

Lawyer Yuval Getahun, who immigrated to Israel as part of Operation Moses, found a job through the Olim Together program.

Most striking was the timeliness and relevance of the programs we fund. Whether it was an educational program for economically disadvantaged youth such as Heznek L’Atid, or an early childhood education program for Israeli Arabs such as ECHAD, it was clear that our grantees are addressing the most pressing issues of the day in Israel. Expert after expert – we were treated to a series of morning lectures by some of Israel’s leading thinkers, including Ha’aretz columnist Aluf Ben and Minority Affairs Minister Avishay Braverman – cited equal opportunity, education, and job training as key to strengthening Israeli civil society and building a prosperous future. In addition to visiting more than five programs we already fund, our delegation also had a chance to visit a handful of potential funding sites, as well as hear from leading Israeli philanthropists. And in spite of the hectic schedule, which had us running from eight in the morning until eight at night, we managed to find a little time to pick some sun-kissed Israeli oranges! Committee members took to the groves when we visited the Leket, Table to Table program, which gleans unused food and distributes it to more than 40,000 needy Israelis every day.


Rosanne Levitt and Joelle Steefel pick oranges at the Leket program.

Rosanne Levitt and Joelle Steefel pick oranges at the Leket program.

Categories: Israel


March 25, 2010


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