A VOLUNTEER hands out food to African migrants 370.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
The Welfare Ministry launched an initiative aimed at promoting volunteerism
among Israelis during a meeting held on the subject last week.
Central Bureau of Statistics data that revealed that only 18.8 percent of the
population in Israel chose to volunteer, the ministry partnered with the Prime
Minister’s Office in order to start The Israeli Volunteering Enterprise, an
initiative that is set to cost the government some NIS 10 million over three
The enterprise, including the participation of the business as
well as the non-profit sector, is aimed at significantly increasing the amount
of volunteer work done in the country and improving its quality.
addition, the project is designed to promote a coherent policy that views
volunteering and social involvement as an integral part of the concept of
citizenship in Israel. Such a policy is to be developed in consultation with
professionals and experts in the field of volunteerism, who are to be recruited
by the ministry.
Menachem Wagshal, Welfare Ministry executive director,
said the ministry attaches great importance to encouraging volunteering and that
such activity represents “a central and significant element in the development
of civil society, which is a cornerstone in strengthening the country's social
“A humane and ethical society is measured by its ability to
implement and practice the values of mutual responsibility, community
involvement and helping others," Wagshal continued.
Ehud Prawer of the
Prime Minister’s Office added that he welcomed the move and he said that
participants in the project had begun “intensive work” on the issue.