Welfare Ministry launches volunteering initiative

NIS 10 million program aims to increase 18.8 pearcent of population that chooses to volunteer.

June 9, 2013 21:03
1 minute read.
A VOLUNTEER hands out food to African migrants

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.

Following 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 years.

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.

In 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 resilience.”

“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.

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