Social Venture Fund Education Projects




Promoting equality in education is critical to breaking the cycle of poverty, bridging economic and social gaps and ultimately, creating a shared society.

Educational gaps between Israeli Jews and Arabs are evident from early childhood through higher education. Inequalities in education manifest in unequal allocation of budgets, lack of sufficient classrooms, laboratories or sports facilities, dropout rates, education achievements (matriculation rates) and funds for special education. It is widely agreed that education performance affects all components of quality of life and society including income, health, crime and GDP. This inequality weighs heavily on the entire Israeli society.

According to the Israeli Authority for Economic Development, the weakness of the formal education system and the absence of an informal education system are the main factors leading to inadequate integration of Israeli Arabs into the workforce, and lower acceptance rates into the higher education system.

Within the area of education, the SVF supports programs and initiatives within Arab communities that promote educational opportunity and success for young adults. Programs focus on shared life education, volunteerism and leadership development, joint learning initiatives and increasing access to higher education opportunities.


Current Grantees

NEW: ANU – Campaign to Promote the Integration of Arab Teachers in Jewish Schools
ANU, in partnership with Merchavim, will implement a targeted media campaign in the summer of 2016 aimed at boosting efforts to successfully integrate Arab teachers in Jewish schools throughout Israel. This tailored campaign will promote Arab teacher integration among principals and government supervisors in support of the Ministry of Education’s goal to integrate 500 Arab teachers over a 5-year period.  

NEW: AJEEC-NISPED (Arab Jewish Center for Equality, Empowerment and Cooperation and (AJEEC) – Negev Institute for Strategies of Peace and Development (NISPED) – AJEEC-NISPED – The Alumni Organization of the AJEEC-NISPED’s Arab-Jewish Gap Year
A new alumni association will be launched to strengthen connections among its 500 Jewish and Arab alumni of shared society programming to provide the skills, tools, networking and ongoing support to continue their commitment to Arab-Jewish cooperation and community empowerment and develop and implement shared society programming and outreach in universities, schools and communities.

NEW: Beit Berl – Cross Cultural Proficiency Training for Teachers 
Located in Kfar Saba and the largest academic college in Israel, Beit Berl is developing and implementing new, cross-cultural proficiency training and shared society education for its 7,000 undergraduate and graduate students and ongoing professional development for teachers. Beit Berl is also introducing programming and initiatives to create a shared society on campus. 

The Center for Educational Technology (CET) - Shared Life Training Programs for Jewish and Arab Teachers
CET develops and implements educational content, advanced technologies, next generation learning products and programs to advance Israel’s education system. The Shared Life Training Program trains 100 Jewish and Arab educators from the North and Center of the country as well as West and East Jerusalem, reducing stereotypes, increasing trust, strengthening democratic values, nurturing dialogue and has expanded this initiative to include joint learning groups in math, science and literature in Arab and Jewish schools.

The Center for Educational Technology (CET) - Joint Shared Life Training Programs for Arab and Jewish School Principals
The Joint Shared Life Training Program for Principals brings together 24 Jewish and Arab principals, teachers and social coordinators from elementary, middle and high schools in the mixed city of Ramla to strategize and promote creating a culture of tolerance and respect in schools. In Jerusalem, 25 Jewish and Arab principals and senior administrators from West and East Jerusalem learn together including a field visit to schools in Northern Ireland to learn from their experience. Pilot joint learning partnerships will be introduced in 12 schools. 

Desert Stars - Wilderness Education Program Discovering the Shepherd Within
Desert Stars was established in 2013 by a group of Bedouins and Jews who share a mutual vision of developing leadership within Bedouin society in the Negev. This intensive leadership development incubator program is designed to produce a cohort of male Bedouin leaders who will be role models within their communities. The program includes career orientation and academic preparation to help participants gain access to higher education opportunities and mentoring. 

Givat Haviva - Hebrew Language Enrichment Program for Arab Middle Schools 
Givat Haviva is dedicated to promoting mutual responsibility, civic equality and cooperation between divided groups in Israel as the foundation for building a shared future and shared society. This expanded program aims to strengthen and deepen the knowledge of Hebrew language and culture among 7th-9th grade Arab students in 287 classes in 27 schools with a focus on spoken language and contemporary culture.

NEW: Hand in Hand: Center for Jewish-Arab Education in Israel – From Students to Citizens Program for HIH’s Alumni
Hand in Hand will strengthen its existing alumni program to enable graduates of HIH schools to become ambassadors for social and civic equality, helping to create a shared society in Israel. In addition to skill building and leadership development, the program will create frameworks for alumni to give back to their schools and initiate shared society activities in communities, universities and other settings,

NEW: Mahapach-Taghir – Alumni in Action
This new pilot program will target 2500 student alumni, providing a platform on which they can build their own initiatives promoting equality, empowerment and shared society values in their own communities and the development of an alumni database and network. Activities will focus on expanding knowledge and sharpening tools and implementing joint social change projects on local, regional and national levels.


MerkazMa'ase – AFAK Volunteer Year for Israeli Arab Youth Ages 18-21 in the Israeli Arab Periphery
Ma'ase works to broaden the accessibility of volunteering service and leadership activity to youth in Israel. The Volunteer Year Program for Israeli Arab youth is performed in the volunteers’ communities and consists of long-term volunteering in formal and informal education, in return for stipends and grants, personal and leadership skills, career orientation and shared encounters.

MERCHAVIM: The Institute for the Advancement of Shared Citizenship in Israel - Arab Teacher Integration Program
MERCHAVIM was established to create a fairer society for all Israeli citizens through shared citizenship education.  Merchavim is leading the Ministry of Education’s plan to place 500 qualified Arab-Israeli teachers in Jewish-Israeli schools across a range of subjects including English, math, science and geography in order to employ hundreds of unemployed teachers who are positive role models and further a shared society.

Sami Shamoon College of Engineering – 100 Bedouin Engineers Program
The Sami Shamoon College of Engineering (SCE) is the largest engineering college in Israel, and is Israel's fastest growing academic college.  The SVF grant has helped 150 Bedouin men and women studying towards their undergraduate engineering degree by providing scholarships, stipends, academic counseling and social supports, and preparation for employment.  

NEW: Sikkuy: The Association for the Advancement of Civic Equality – Education for Shared Society and Equality
Sikkuy will map and analyze education for shared society programs and Arab language instruction in Jewish schools.  Sikkuy will create a work plan to advance adoption and funding of universal education for equality and shared society for Jewish and Arab students and Arabic language students for Jewish students within the public school system.  

The Abraham Fund Initiatives (TAFI) – Spoken Hebrew as a Cultural Bridge in Israel’s Arab Elementary School System
TAFI advances coexistence, equality and cooperation among Israel’s Jewish and Arab populations. This program will integrate Jewish teachers into 5th-6th grade classes in 43 Arab schools in the North, Center and South to provide an additional Hebrew lesson per week designed to improve spoken Hebrew and to help Arab, Hebrew language teachers improve Hebrew language instruction.   

NEW: The Abraham Fund Initiatives (TAFI) – Education for the Next Generation
TAFI will develop and implement an educational model for shared living and shared society that will become part of the pre-army academic annual programming that will include an Arab language course, lectures on Arab society and the challenges of Jewish-Arab relations in Israel, field trips to Arab communities and facilitated intergroup dialogue encounters. 

The Van Leer Institute Jerusalem – The Israeli Academic Sphere as a Shared Social Arena 
The Van Leer Jerusalem Institute is a leading intellectual center for the interdisciplinary study and discussion of issues related to philosophy, society, culture and education. This project is an ongoing forum of academic coordinators at universities and colleges who gather to exchange and document best practices for shared campuses and learn about minority integration on college campuses from the experiences of universities outside of Israel.

Past Grantees

Academic College of Tel Hai – The Center for Peace and Democracy 
The Center for Peace and Democracy at the College of Tel Hai works to advance equality of opportunity for Arab students through Hebrew language courses, student mentoring and support, Arab-Jewish dialogue courses, cultural activities on campus and research.

Alnuhud: The Association for the Promotion of Bedouin Woman's Education in the Negev – The Pre-Academic Project,
Alnuhud, promotes general and higher education among Bedouin women, the rights of women to education in the Bedouin community and the government's commitment to promote and support for Bedouin women's education. 

American Joint Distribution Committee – Israel and the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin and Sonoma Counties  – Promoting Professional Leadership Development in the Early Childhood Field
The Professional Leadership Development Program provides 19 promising Israeli-Arab professionals in the early childhood field with assistance towards their Master’s Degree in an Early Childhood Education at the Hebrew University’s prestigious Schwartz Graduate Program.

Arab Jewish Center for Equality, Empowerment and Cooperation (AJEEC) – Negev Institute for Strategies of Peace and Development (NISPED) – AJEEC-NISPED – The Arab-Jewish Community Volunteer Year Program
AJEEC-NISPED promotes peace and development and the centrality of civil society in Israel through education and training, project development, consultation and networking. The Arab-Jewish Community Volunteer Year Program brings together Bedouin and Jewish high school graduates to work together in Bedouin and Jewish schools for a year-long, joint community volunteer program.

The Center for Educational Technology (CET) – Development, Training and Implementation of “Arab Labor” Online Educational Kit 
CET developed, trained and disseminated an online educational kit utilizing clips from the TV show, Arab Labor. The kit includes materials and courses for educators including Jewish and Arab teachers, principals, social activity coordinators and shared citizenship programs in middle and high schools to promote shared society and address controversial issues in classroom settings.

The Center for Educational Technology (CET) and Merchavim – Amplifying Arab Teacher Integration through On-Line Training, Resources and Support 
This project leverages the impact of the Arab teacher integration program through the development and maintenance of an online environment for new and veteran Arab teachers in Jewish schools. The online platform provides access to resources and mutual sharing with facilitators. CET will operate the online platform and Merchavim will provide educational expertise.

Citizens Build a Community – Arab Community Service Project
Citizens Build a Community creates an active civil society in the mixed city of Lod, which suffers from ethnic friction, poverty and lack of social empowerment. Citizens Build a Community establishes neighborhood youth centers, empowers local residents, and develops local leadership.

Hand in Hand: Center for Jewish-Arab Education for Equality and Hagar – Jewish-Arab Education for Creating a Coalition for Bilingual Education in Israel
HAGAR is a spring-board for social change through its bilingual, multicultural day care centers, school and community programming based in Beersheva. Hand in Hand is a network of five integrated, bilingual schools combining peace education and top academic standards. The Coalition brings together senior staff of bilingual educational frameworks to learn from each other, share issues and insights, and develop concepts and methodologies together in the field of bilingual education.

Open University of Israel – Creating Conditions for Success
The Open University is committed to diversity and provides customized support to facilitate academic success. The Creating Conditions for Success Program offers a basket of assistance to first year Arab students including Hebrew language, study skills, and tuition support.

Rashi Foundation – Yeholot Association – Tafnit-Last Hurdle for Matriculation Program
Rashi’s assists the underprivileged in Israel, focusing on the younger generations and special-needs populations, helping them reach their potential and become productive, contributing members of society. Tafnit (Hebrew for "turnaround") aims to close the educational gap between underachievers and their classmates, and to reduce the disparity between schools.

The Abraham Fund Initiatives (TAFI) – Contemporary Jewish-Hebrew Cultural Activities in Arab Schools
TAFI advances coexistence, equality and cooperation among Israel’s Jewish and Arab populations. The Contemporary Jewish-Hebrew Cultural Activities increases appreciation of Jewish culture, and providing meaningful opportunities for joint projects between Jewish and Arab schools.

Step Forward for the Promotion of Education in Rahat – Community Creating Change for Youth in Rahat
Step Forward empowers the Israeli Bedouin population of Rahat. Community Creating Change for Youth in Rahat targets Bedouin high school students and promotes access to higher education opportunities through college guidance counseling, college fairs and tours, and educational enrichment programming.

Capacity-Building Grantees

Inter-Agency Task Force on Israeli-Arab Issues
The Inter-Agency Task Force on Israeli-Arab Issues generates awareness among the North American Jewish and Israeli public in order to advance civic equality in Israel, as outlined by Israel's founders.

Shatil, the New Israel Fund
Shatil, the New Israel Fund's empowerment and training center, promotes democracy, tolerance, and social justice in Israel. Israel's leading capacity-building center for social change organizations, Shatil provides non-profit organizations with consulting and training in organizational development, media and public relations, advocacy, resource development, coalition building, and volunteer management each year.

GA '18 Takes on Tel Aviv!