Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Tel Aviv: Beit HaShanti

We visited Beit HaShanti in Tel Aviv last week. It's an organization for runaway Israeli teenagers based in a beautiful house in Neve Tzedek. In the 22 years that the house has been in existence they have helped 16,000 youth. The place is incredible and we hung out with some of the kids that live there, played the bongo drums and had a bar-b-q lunch. These NGO's are inspiring and they do amazing work.
These organizations also speak to a growing issue in Israel - the fact that the government ignores these social issues and leaves it to the work of these non-profits, many of which look for funding from the American Jewish foundations and private donors. The JPost has a good editorial on this issue titled, "Don't Abuse Philanthropy."

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