Top social welfare projects honored for their work

Project treating young victims of online abuse, program empowering deaf Arab-Israeli women to improve their lives among honorees.

social welfare project honorees 370 (photo credit: Three Photographers)
social welfare project honorees 370
(photo credit: Three Photographers)
A prize for social welfare innovation was awarded on Thursday to social workers responsible for a project treating young victims of online abuse, a program empowering deaf Arab-Israeli women to improve their lives and an initiative addressing sexuality issues faced by youth with disabilities.
“The projects chosen were among the most moving of all the 40 projects submitted for the prize,” commented Israeli businessman Leon Recanati, who heads the Recanati-Chais-Rashi foundation that awarded the prizes, which also includes a monetary award of NIS 10,000 per project.
Eli Alaluf, executive vice president and director-general of the Rashi Foundation, said that these particular projects stood out because they “addressed the needs of the people in need and helped them by using creative tools to solve problems.”
The selection of the prizes is also overseen by Professor Ya’acov Kopp, former director of The Taub Center for Social Policy Studies in Israel.
One of the prizes went to Zohar Goren and ELI, the Israel Association for Child Protection, which operates an outreach and treatment program for youth that have been victims of sexual, physical or social violence caused by the Internet. The project operates in numerous schools countrywide and has worked with more than 5,000 people in Hebrew, Arabic and Russian.
Social worker Louis Habiballah from the local municipality of Ein Mahel also received a prize for creating a support group for some 30 deaf women, teaching them sign language and basic subjects such as math. Out of the 30, 10 of the women also learned to drive and eventually obtained drivers licenses, 15 of them harnessed skills in art and cooking and three of the women took up sports.
The third winning project was created by therapist Miriam Brenner, whose initiative focuses on providing information and counseling about sexuality to youths with disabilities and their parents.
According to the prizegivers, the aim of the awards is to recognize the efforts of the social workers countrywide and to encourage them to expand their activities in order to reach new people and obtain higher standards.
In addition to the three top prizes, seven other social welfare projects received citations for their work.
Social workers received their prizes Thursday in a special ceremony attended by Nahum Itzkovitch, directorgeneral of the Ministry of Welfare and Social Affairs.
Earlier in the week, the philanthropic trio also awarded NIS 10,000 prizes to three innovative educational projects.