IGP helps improve families’ lives in Israel

Local News l

By Greta Roberts
Israel Liaison Chair

The Sarasota-Manatee Section made their annual contribution to the Israel Granting Program (IGP) this past June. The works that NCJW supports in Israel are grassroots projects that work to improve the lives of women, children and families in Israel as well as to advance gender equality. As we read the political news from Israel we can understand the great importance these programs have for Israelis.

Specifically, the current programs that are being supported are the RIFIE project at Hebrew University that trains Bedouin woman as early childhood paraprofessionals and a program that serves the needs of women and their children who have left the closed ultra-Orthodox communities in Israel and who find themselves with no skills and no community for the larger society they find themselves in. Additionally, a program called “Hillel: The Right to Choose” is supported, a program assisting women and their children who are victims of trafficking and prostitution. A grant was also given to Israel Hofsheet and their work in training volunteer lawyers throughout Israel to counsel couples looking for marriage alternatives to the increasingly powerful Rabbinate.

These programs are very much in line with the goals of the National Council of Jewish Women. Two new projects that will look to strengthen democracy and civil society in Israel have also been funded. One is “Women Wage Peace” a women’s non-partisan movement with the goal of developing dialogue with women of various communities who wish to work towards resolution on the Israel-Palestinian conflict. The second new and exciting project is the creation of an Alumni Association for the NCJW Women and Gender Studies Program at Tel Aviv University.

A weeklong NCJW leadership study tour in Israel is planned for 2018 and hopefully our section will have leaders able to participate and report back to all of us on the status of our sisters and their families in Israel.