New Collaborative Announces $900,000 in Grants to Improve Women’s Health Care for Israel’s Most Vulnerable Minorities

August 29, 2011 at 10:34 am | Posted in Press Releases | Leave a comment

Cleveland, OH–The Collaborative for Healthy Women, a new collaboration between the Jewish Federation of Cleveland and Healing Across the Divides, recently announced five grant awards to grassroots women’s healthcare groups in Israel totaling $900,000.

The grants, which are awarded for a three-year period with an annual renewal process contingent on performance and evaluation, will fund a diverse range of women’s health projects in Israel including Israeli-Jewish, Israeli-Arab and joint Israeli-Jewish and Arab groups. Additionally, the grantees will participate in Collaborative-coordinated workshops and receive individualized professional and organizational training.

The Collaborative, which began working together this year, is committed to improving health care among underserved Israeli women. By identifying the needs, helping organizations develop the tools and ultimately finding the solutions that will work systemically and collaboratively, the goal is to continue to improve the health status of underserved and marginalized women in Israel. See below for the list of funded projects.

The strong response to the call for proposals confirmed the critical need for support across Israel’s diverse communities. More than 100 proposals were received from nearly every region in the country, representing Jews, Arabs, Ethiopians, new immigrants, veteran Israelis, young, old, secular and Orthodox.

“By leveraging our funds and expertise through the Collaborative, we will be able to make considerable strides assisting communities that often do not fully benefit from Israel’s national health care,” said Marcia Levine, chair of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland’s Israel Health Advancement for Women program (ISHA), a dynamic model for change that emphasizes the need for health care and health promotion for women in Israel.

“During the last ten years ISHA has made a difference in the lives of over 100,000 women in Israel,” continued Levine. “The overwhelming success we’ve had – both with healthcare professionals and women themselves – has enabled us to tap into additional funding sources. This partnership will enable us to further extend our reach and together, we can help improve the well-being of thousands of women and their families in Israel.”

Outreach through community-based organizations is often the key to reaching people who would otherwise go untreated. Many of these populations are marginalized in terms of healthcare access.

The Collaborative’s main objective is to fund innovative and evidence-based projects that are replicable. “The amount of funding we are offering is going to make a significant difference for the organizations that understand the challenges and implement strategies and activities to create change,” said Dr. Norbert Goldfield, physician and founder of Healing Across the Divides.

Because sustainability of these projects is paramount, the Collaborative is also providing organizational development training to strengthen recipient organizations’ long-term effectiveness and offering the tools to help cultivate vital working relationships.

This past month, representatives from the five recipient organizations met in Tel Aviv with Collaborative team members to begin the first in a series of quarterly roundtable discussions. Recipients shared their vision and individual approaches to these critical women’s health initiatives.

“Together we are creating a dynamic environment,” said Oren Baratz, Vice President, External Affairs, Jewish Federation of Cleveland. “We are building a culture of professional exchange, cross-cultural partnerships and sustainable systemic change.”

For more information about the Collaborative for Healthy Women and Healing Across the Divides, please contact Miriam Isserow, Director of American Operations, Healing Across the Divides, at 301.520.5925 or

For information on the ISHA program, please contact Oren Baratz, Vice President, External Affairs, Jewish Federation of Cleveland, at 216.593.2788 or


  • Hiyot (Amharic for “Life”) Social educational and economic aid for the Ethiopian community in Israel
    Addressing the health and social difficulties of Ethiopian-Israeli teenage girls, with a focus on societal differences, laws regarding rape, personal hygiene, sexual behavior and HIV awareness.
  • Mifras B’Galil with El-Manal / Head to Toe
    An educational project geared for young, single and physically-disabled women about taking responsibility for their bodies and their sexual relationships.
  • Hadassah Optimal / Empowering the Tipat Halav
    Empowering Tipat Halav (community-based clinics for women and children) nurses to provide women with practical tools to enhance healthy lifestyles.
  • The Rahat Women’s Association: Active Women of Rahat
    Educating Bedouin women about the importance of healthy and active living.
  • Kayan
    Developing sustainable leadership for women’s health and improving health rights actualization among Arab women.


— Jewish Federation of Cleveland —


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