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Issues of the Day Honored to Serve Yedid, Israel’s Association for Community Empowerment
 

I am honored to have been asked to join the national board of Yedid, Israel’s association for community empowerment. I have gladly accepted the nomination and am grateful for the opportunity to contribute to one of Israel’s most distinguished public interest organizations.

 

Established in 1997, Yedid (Hebrew for “friend”) conducts anti-poverty, social justice, civil rights and community organizing activities in support of citizens from all sectors: Jews, Arabs, Druze and other groups, secular and observant, men, women and children. Its sixteen Citizen Rights Centers and Satellites are situated in communities where they are most needed from the far north to the southern reaches of the country.

 

Walk-In Centers

Yedid's  storefront-styled facilities provide assistance to people under financial, legal or other duress and are staffed by trained staff along with volunteers. They advise clients concerning their rights and how to avail themselves of governmental and other resources. Toward this end Yedid collaborates with fifty other national or local organizations.

 

Single mothers, new immigrants, the unemployed and other people who need assistance are among Yedid’s clients. With the help of business sponsors, courses are offered in skills training,  employment preparation and family budget management.

 

Public Initiatives

The association has focus programs aimed at assisting Bedouin communities, youth-at-risk,  disabled people, peripheralized towns and marginalized groups and individuals. Yedid assists people in solving housing problems, personal bankruptcy, bureaucratic obstacles and other personal challenges. It is active in numerous public policy initiatives regarding issues ranging from educational resources, accessibility and transport, food security, banking reform and other consumer issues.  

 

Supporting Israel’s Living Fabric

Several years ago, I offered to donate part of the proceeds from the sale of my 2011 book Rise, A Novel of Contemporary  Israel to Yedid. Since then, my family and I have made regular contributions to the organization. These were expressions of support extended from a distance. I will now have a chance to be directly involved on the frontlines of social justice, assisting people in need and by that helping to strengthen Israel’s living fabric.

 

I am grateful for this singular opportunity and look forward to doing my part. 


© Yosef Gotlieb, . All rights reserved