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Meet Pitchon Lev, the NGO aiding scores of vulnerable Israelis this Pesach

ByJPOST.COM STAFF
April 3, 2017 09:44

Nisim Tzioni

Pitchon Lev director Nisim Tzioni with late president Shimon Peres. (photo credit:Courtesy)

"Studies conducted in Israel prove that a  child raised in a poor family will be poor himself, his children will be poor and so on. This figure is not consistent with the basket of values inherent in Jewish genes where helping others is of crucial importance," says Nissim Zioni, founder and CEO of the Pitchon-Lev organization.

One in three children in Israel is hungry. Today, over 1.8 million Israelis live beneath the poverty line. The organization Pitchon Lev offers immediate help and long-term aid to those in need. Ahead of this Passover holiday, you are invited to join and contribute to ensure that each Israeli citizen can enjoy a holiday dinner.

Pitchon-Lev is an apolitical, nonprofit organization founded in 1998 to break the inter-generational cycle of poverty in Israel. The organization helps over 250,000 people every year, regardless of gender, religion, race, ethnicity or nationality. The organization maintains direct contact with the recipients of their support so that solutions can be adapted to any immediate and specific needs that arise.


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This Passover, 13,000 poor families will arrive at the Pitchon-Lev aid centers, which are scattered throughout Israel. At Pitchon Lev's various help centers, thousands of needy families are sent by social workers across the country to receive the support and services they need. Each month, the organization distributes more than 6,000 food baskets to families, 1,000 baskets for infants and more than 20,000 articles of clothing and shoes.

Both Fish and Fishing Rods 

"It is important for us to create real and comprehensive social change in Israel, and therefore we invest heavily in the children of the recipients of aid. We have managed to get 87% of them out of poverty, "says Zioni.
 
In 2003 g, the Pitchon-Lev organization built an educational empowerment program aimed at accompanying youth from the geographic and social periphery to beat the cycle of poverty.
 
"Together with Tel Aviv University, we examined the specific difficulties and challenges of this youth and adapted solutions for them," says Tzioni.
 
"Touching the horizon" is the result. A program that accompanies the youth for seven years through three main lifetimes:

Phase One: High School: 10th-12th grade: High school graduation
 
Three years: Empowerment and cultivating leadership qualities, volunteering in the community, and assessing and monitoring the individual's achievements. 

Phase Two: Army Service: Enlisting in the IDF or Sherut Leumi (National Service)
Three years: The empowerment mentor continues to accompany soldiers throughout their service along with a volunteer IDF reserves officer. Soldiers receive a monthly financial stipend.


Phase Three: Civilian Life: Support in the civilian life

One year: The mentor accompanies the participant for one year after completion of his/her military service, and helps the young adult integrate into an academic institute or workplace. 

Participants touch the horizon on the day of consolidation
At the end of the program we place them in one of three situations: Significant work places, diploma studies or degree studies. Eighty-seven percent of the program graduates are already there." For us it is important not to meet them in the future in our aid centers," emphasizes Zioni.

A National Effort is Required

With former prime minister Ehud Barak

"The neglect of the working class by Israel's governments, along with the wave of rising living costs, has made Israel among the poorest countries in comparison to other democracies in the world," says Pitchon Lev founder and CEO Tzioni.

Laws of Pitchon Lev

The law is our answer to our desire to restore responsibility to the government. The order of things should be as follows:

The organization's great dream is to return the responsibility for dealing with poverty to the government, and that we will no longer be needed. We believe that the government, and not the non-profit organizations, should be concerned about citizens and the needy population. In order to realize this dream, we formulated the Pitchon Lev Law.


Click here donate and help Pitchon Lev help others celebrate the upcoming Passover holiday.

For more information, click here.

This article was written in cooperation with Pitchon Lev.




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