6th annual ‘Good Deeds Day’ set to kick off

Study finds 18% of Israelis volunteer regularly to help their community.

Good Deeds Day logo 370 (photo credit: Courtesy)
Good Deeds Day logo 370
(photo credit: Courtesy)
More than 250,000 Israelis are expected to turn their hands to volunteering on Tuesday as part of the sixth annual “Good Deeds Day,” a project initiated by multimillionaire businesswoman and philanthropist Shari Arison.
The project, which was launched in 2007 by Arison’s nonprofit organization Ruach Tova and supported by The Ted Arison Family Foundation, will this year see some 163 local authorities, including 62 from the Arab community, along with hundreds of schools, academic institutions, soldiers, businesses and other organizations volunteering to do a good deed.
Among the 3,400 good deed activities planned for Tuesday will be efforts by volunteers sent out to paint houses for the elderly, clean up beaches, renovate day-care facilities for children at risk, and plant community gardens.
Events in Israel will be followed on March 25 with International Good Deeds Day in various cities and communities around the world.
“Every year, I am thrilled to see people from Israel and around the world come out and give of their time and skill to do a good deed for others,” commented Arison, who will attend events in Jerusalem, Ramle and Tel Aviv on Tuesday.
“I believe this year hundreds of thousands will participate in Israel and worldwide by joining in on this special day to bring about real change for us and for future generations,” she added.
Meanwhile on Monday – in time for Good Deeds Day – food aid charity Hasdei Naomi, which has a network of more than 4000 volunteers, released the results of a Geocartography survey showing that less than a quarter of Israelis actively contribute to society on a regular basis.
According to the survey, which used a sample of some 500 Israelis aged 18 and up, only 18 percent of Israelis are involved in community volunteering. Of those, the majority (6.3%) volunteer with children or youth, 2.3% contribute their help to health facilities, 2.2% in food distribution and packaging for the needy and the remaining 1.7% volunteer in old age homes and for the elderly.
Of those who volunteer, 8.2% volunteer more than 30 hours a month and the majority of those are over the age of 55; 11.4% volunteer 15-20 hours a month; 7.3% volunteer 10-15 hours a month; 7.4% volunteer 3-4 hours a month and 14% volunteer an hour or two each month.
The survey also showed that the majority of those who volunteer, 27.1%, are unemployed and the next biggest group of volunteers, 16.7%, are educators. The rest come from the hi-tech sector, the health industry or are soldiers or in security services, the research showed.