I was privileged to attend a ceremony marking the completion of the engineering course for Ethiopian and Bedouin Israelis that was supported by the Shared Society committee of the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest. After completing their studies, the students began working at the Israel Electricity Company this past Wednesday. Students who I spoke with mentioned how excited they were to start working and that, for them, this paved a path to a bright future career. One, Anadi, mentioned that she felt like she had won the lottery. Not everyone from her village has this opportunity.
In addition to their academic achievements, their course instructor noted that the group had formed strong connections with one another. He said that when the course started the students sat in separate groups, but now they all chose to sit together in one row. One student, Ibrahim, told me that he hadn’t known many Ethiopian Israeli Jews before the course and that they became close friends of his through many hours studying together in the library. Sarit, the JDC program coordinator, mentioned that she saw that all the students, both Ethiopian and Bedouin, shared much in common and enjoyed connecting over simple things such as burekas after class.
Yael Birin addressed the students, congratulating them and explaining why this course was important to your federation. At the end of the program, one of the representatives from the college told me that based on the model of this course they are starting a similar course for various types of Israelis in coordination with Elbit.
In Israel, JDC addresses the nation’s most complex social challenges. JDC works tirelessly to break cycles of poverty among the most vulnerable, improve the wellbeing and resilience of older adults, foster inclusion and independent living for people with disabilities, and provide access to opportunity for all.
JDC drives systemic change by bringing together partners including the Government of Israel, municipal leaders, the business sector, and NGOs. We are privileged to be a long-standing overseas partner of your federation.
Thank you for your partnership in creating a better Israel!