- Written by Silvia G Golan
Yesterday, April 30th, Birthright Israel held a formal reception honoring Co-Founder and chairman, Michael Steinhardt, who was chosen to light the torch of the Diaspora on the eve of Independence Day at Mount Herzl.
The event was held at the Hensen House in Jerusalem in the presence of Birthright Israel's business community, Steinhardt's family, associates & friends, and alums and donors, including: Len Rosen, CEO Barclays Israel, Yossi Beilin, Yoram Tietz, Managing Partner at Ernst & Young, MK Roy Folkman, Hagay Elitzur, Senior Director of Diaspora Affairs, Natan Sharansky, Chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel, Alan Hoffmann Director-General of The Jewish Agency, Prof. Gil Troy, Aviad Freedman, Chairman & CEO of the Israel Association of Community Centers, MK Elazar Stern, Tova Dorfman, Director of the Steinhardt Foundation in Israel, David Gapel, Senior Director of the Schusterman Foundation in Israel and Birthright Israel's International CEO, Gidi Mark, among others.
- Written by The Haruv Children’s Campus
The Haruv Children’s Campus is now opening in Jerusalem, the first center of its kind for treating child victims of abuse and neglect that brings together all the professional workers and required services unto one location, which will significantly alleviate the therapeutic process for maltreated children.
THE CENTER WILL ENABLE, FOR THE FIRST TIME, THE INTEGRATION OF GROUND-BREAKING ACADEMIC KNOWLEDGE WITH ITS IMPLEMENTATION IN PROGRESSIVE TREATMENT METHODS
The phenomenon of child abuse and neglect is a harsh reality, with 40,000 cases of child maltreatment reported annually in Israel. A study done at Haifa University, published last year, presents a far bleaker picture and indicates that nearly half of all Israeli children have endured violence or abuse in the course their lives.
The Haruv Children’s Campus, located at Mt. Scopus, adjacent to the Hadassah Hospital and Hebrew University, will serve maltreated children, victims of abuse and neglect, by addressing their needs comprehensively, in the aim to empower the care currently provided, by partnering up with all the leading organizations that provide treatment for these children.
The campus brings together the entire range of professional workers and services: the Schusterman Emergency Center, the Center for Protection of the Child (Beit-Lynn), a treatment center for child victims of sexual abuse (Meital), the National Council for the Child, the SHEKEL Therapeutic Treatment Unit, Maavarim – Jerusalem Center for Family and Marriage Counselling, MSR - the Center for Social Simulation, and the Goshen Initiative. Additionally, community-based advocacy services will be offered, as well as clinical and treatment services provided by physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, lawyers, social workers and occupational therapists.
In the past, many professionals raised the issue of a systemic failure to identify child victims of maltreatment. One reason was the difficulty encountered in consistently transmitting and sharing information between the children’s various care-givers, who were also frequently bound by confidentiality and secrecy in their contact with the children, a fact that hindered providing more effective help to the children and their parents. An inter-ministerial committee, established following the murder of the little girl, Rose Pizem, emphasized the need for developing innovative strategies of collaboration between professionals to enable early detection and prevention of child abuse and neglect.
Prof. Asher Ben Arieh, executive director of the Haruv Institute and founder of the campus, adds: “This campus is a new model of the ‘one-stop shop’, stemming from the belief that there is a real and significant need for the physical concentration of all the service organizations, amongst other things in order to prevent the occurrence of cases ‘falling between the cracks’. The synergy born of this cooperative work model will promote the professional enrichment of the care-giving bodies, improve the accessibility of the services and facilitate providing maltreated children with comprehensive, state-of-the-art professional care that can address all their needs. The cooperation between all the organizations will enhance the contribution of each of the partners, creating a whole that is greater than its parts.”
Much thought was invested in the planning and design of the campus, taking into consideration the needs of the children and their families. Throughout the campus calming elements have been introduced, such as water, pastoral greenery, play areas created from natural materials and seating areas in warm, pleasant colors. The interior spaces have colorful play rooms, work areas that provide privacy, and a school and kindergarten for children at the emergency center.
The establishment of the campus, led by the Haruv Institute, was made possible thanks to the fruitful cooperation between the Ministry of Welfare, the Haruv Institute, the National Insurance Institute, the Jerusalem Municipality and the Hebrew University, and through the generous support of the Schusterman-Israel Foundation and JDC Israel. Prof. Yossi Tamir, executive director of JDC Israel adds, “As an innovative model worldwide, this campus will serve as a magnet drawing to it the finest researchers, professionals and students. Thus the campus will serve as both a research and treatment center, the first of its kind, and will be the home for unique and leading innovations.”
Photos Silvia Golan
- Written by President’s Spokesperson
With the Jewish festival of Chanukah to begin on Sunday evening (6th December), President Rivlin issued the following message to Jewish communities around the world.
A video of the greeting is available here - https://youtu.be/WKhtyRL5z4g
“My dear brothers and sisters in Israel, and around the world. At Chanukah we stand around the lights, watch as they glow, and sing together Maoz Tzur, a song that tells about the many challenges that have risen against the Jewish people in the past. We celebrate the survival of our people and our faith against all the odds. We celebrate the freedom that was won in those days, and that we enjoy today with Israel as the national home of the Jewish people. It is no coincidence that the symbol of the Government of Israel is the Menorah, the symbol of Jewish independence, which lights our path. In each generation we must find that path; to reinforce the bonds between Jews across the world, to share together, to hold high the torch of freedom. To bring light where there is darkness. Just as it was for the heroic Maccabim, the light of the Menorah inspires us all.
“Today, hatred, incitement, and terrorism threaten the whole world. In the face of these threats we need to be firm and strong like a rock – like Maoz Tzur – in our beliefs in freedom, justice, in the values of our tradition and of democracy. So this year as we gather with our families and communities and look at the wonderful lights it is my prayer that we will be reminded of the bonds that we all share, and the important role we all have of being a light unto the nations.
“Our thoughts at this time are of course with those who will be celebrating with a heavy heart; the injured and the families who have lost loved ones in the wave of terror that has struck in Israel, and around the world. To them especially, and to all the Jewish people, I wish a very happy Chanukah. Shalom from Jerusalem.”
- Written by Taglit
Last night's event marked the 2016-17opening of the Center showcasing Israel's contributions to global entrepreneurship, innovation and technology
Nearly 200 business leaders, entrepreneurs, philanthropists and other supporters, gathered last night in a celebration of the Birthright Israel Innovation Center, which was established in partnership with the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE). Following a successful summer season, where over 13,000 young Birthright Israel participants and dozens of delegations from Israel and around the world visited the Innovation Center, the opening of the Center to nearly 15,000 future young Birthright Israel participants and distinguished guests was declared.
Gidi Mark, CEO of Birthright Israel, Yoram Tietz- Birthright Israel Excel Chairman and Managing partner of EY Israel, Yifat Oron, CEO of LeumiTech, Simon Litsyn, Engineering Fellow of Sandisk, Igal Bareket, VP of Marketing at Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, Gil Dvora, Entrepreneur, Tova Dorfman Executive Director of the Steinhardt family Foundation & David Gappell, Director of the Schusterman Foundation- Israel, were among those who attended the event.
The Innovation center offers visitors a presentation of Israel's greatest achievements in various fields, related to entrepreneurship, innovation and technology. An interactive exhibition displaying various fields characterizing the contribution of Israel, such as agriculture, medicine, and cyber security, science, transportation, aerospace and more is also on display in addition to lectures by various Israeli entrepreneurs who share their personal success stories.
The Center operates in a multilingual format, with a program in French, English, Spanish, Russian, Chinese, and Hebrew. Group and public tours will be open to the public by appointment.
Gidi Mark, Birthright Israel CEO said at the event that "Birthright Israel is the Start Up of the Nation" in front of dozens of Hi-Tech executives. "Birthright is the greatest Start Up that was established by the State of Israel and the Jewish people, both in terms of quality and quantity. Before Birthright Israel was founded, 17 years ago, 2000 students arrived to Israel each year and through Birthright Israel, nowadays, tens of thousands of young Jews from around the world visit Israel annually. Israel is a platform for new beginnings and we are proud to give our participants the opportunity to experience Israel and the Start Up Nation for themselves."
In 2017, the Center is expected to host over 45,000 visitors who will help spread the word about Israel and the global impact it has had as the Start Up Nation.
Birthright Israel has a unique, historical and innovative partnership between the Government of Israel, thousands of individual donors and private philanthropists, and Jewish communities around the world through the Jewish Federations of North America, Keren Hayesod and the Jewish Agency for Israel.
Since its inception in 1999, over 500,000 young Jewish adults from over 66 countries have enjoyed their free gift of a free 10-day educational tour of Israel. Over 80,000 young Israeli soldiers and students have joined various groups on their tours.
Over the years, several studies have been conducted by Brandies University, located in the USA, demonstrating the lasting effect on Diaspora Jews when focusing on their Jewish identity and their connection to Israel.
Visit the Birthright Israel Innovation Center’s page - http://www.taglitinnovation.com/
Facebook Taglit-Birthright Israel State of Mind Innovation Center
Photos : Jacob Ross
- Written by Silvia G Golan
"Diplomacy Staff would like to express deep sorrow over the passing of Israel's fifth president, Yitzhak Navon, and send condolences to his family
Daniel Schwarz Silvia G. Golan
CEO Executive Director
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Photo Silvia Golan