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Bring Health Care to 4000 Needy People in Israel

by YEDID: The Association for Community Empowerment
Bring Health Care to 4000 Needy People in Israel
Bring Health Care to 4000 Needy People in Israel
Bring Health Care to 4000 Needy People in Israel
Bring Health Care to 4000 Needy People in Israel
Bring Health Care to 4000 Needy People in Israel
Bring Health Care to 4000 Needy People in Israel
Bring Health Care to 4000 Needy People in Israel
Bring Health Care to 4000 Needy People in Israel
Bring Health Care to 4000 Needy People in Israel
Bring Health Care to 4000 Needy People in Israel
Bring Health Care to 4000 Needy People in Israel
Bring Health Care to 4000 Needy People in Israel

Joseph Finally Gets his Severance Pay

Joseph, a 68-year-old retiree, turned to YEDID's Mobile Center while it was stationed in Upper Nazareth. Joseph was certain that he was owed NIS 8,600 in severance pay; however, when he contacted his former employer, Joseph was told that the time for demanding severance pay had lapsed, and that there was nothing the employer could do to help Joseph. Distraught, Joseph began to call different insurance companies, to see if his severance pay was being held there. Each insurance company that Joseph called maintained that they had never heard of Joseph, and that they didn't have his money. 

By the time Joseph reached YEDID, he was hopeless. The only documentation he had regarding the severance pay was dated 2002, from a certain insurance company that no longer existed. Mobile Center Director Irena Luria made a few phone calls, and discovered where the accounts of the insurance company that had issued Joseph's document had been moved to. Irena then contacted the insurance company, and discovered that not only did they have Joseph's severance pay, but that it had been collecting interest since 2002 and that it was now worth NIS 22,000. A YEDID volunteer helped Joseph fill out the forms to withdraw the money, and Joseph finally received the money that was rightfully his.

Mobile Center Goals
The goal of YEDID's Mobile Citizen Rights and Health Center is to empower and strengthen residents like Joseph living in Israel's socioeconomic and geographic peripheries in the areas of health and social rights. The Center's objectives are to help clients navigate the national health system; to provide preventative medical services; and to supply information about legal rights and social benefits in the area of health care and other areas (such as housing and National Insurance, to name just two).

Mobile Center in Numbers
From the beginning of May 2015 through the end of September 2015, the Mobile Center provided 234 clients with rights counseling. The most prevalent subjects for which people turned to the center for non-health related issues during this period were matters related to problems in accessing benefits and rights from the National Insurance Institute (Social Security) (29%), debt and repossessions (25%), and issues concerning public housing and mortgages (23%),. Clients served included immigrants and veteran Israelis, Holocaust survivors, Arabs and Jews. 62% of those who turned to us during this reporting period were women.

Plans for the Future
The Mobile Center's plans for the coming months are to increase the number of Health Days we run each month, to recruit more volunteers with specific skills such as fluency in Arabic and Russian, and professional experience in relevant fields.

It's all thanks to YOU
On behalf of YEDID's staff, volunteers, and clients, I thank our supporters for their partnership. The immediate and essential assistance that the center provides to individuals in peripheral towns across the country could never happen without your help. Thank you so much!

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Center staff Irena and Shmuel
Center staff Irena and Shmuel

Jessica Starts Over
Jessica (not her real name) is a single mother of two young children. After a tumultuous divorce and the death of her mother three years ago, Jessica was left with numerous debts; her ex-husband had taken out loans for apartment renovations (the renovations never took place), and Jessica had taken out loans from non-bank facilities even though her financial situation was already catastrophic. The total sum of all of these loans was NIS 126,000, and Jessica paid back the debts in monthly installments of NIS 4,300, though she only brings in NIS 6,500 a month.

Jessica turned to YEDID's Mobile Center when it was in Upper Nazareth, hoping that the center could help her ease the terrible economic situation she found herself in. Center Director Irena Loria immediately got to work. She knew that Jessica's NIS 126,000 loan had to be unified into one big loan, in order for her to reduce her pay back installments. Undeterred by Jessica's precarious finances, Irena turned to Jessica's employers, and asked them to give Jessica a loan that would enable her to close all of her debts. Irena prepared a detailed report of Jessica's finances, and stressed that such a loan would really save Jessica and her family. After some deliberation, Jessica's employers agreed to issue her the loan for a period of five years. Jessica was able to close most of her debts, and now pays her loan back at NIS 2,500 instead of NIS 4,300.

Finally, Jessica can breathe again, and can get back to working, parenting, and living with dignity.

Mobile Center Goals
The goal of YEDID's Mobile Citizen Rights and Health Center is to empower and strengthen residents like Jessica living in Israel's socioeconomic and geographic peripheries in the areas of health and social rights. The Center's objectives are to help clients navigate the national health system; to provide preventative medical services; and to supply information about legal rights and social benefits in the area of health care and other areas (such as housing and National Insurance, to name just two).

Mobile Center in Numbers
From the beginning of February 2015 through the end of April 2015, the Mobile Center provided 133 clients with rights counseling. The most prevalent subjects for which people turned to the center for non-health related issues during this period were matters related to debt and repossessions (28%), issues concerning public housing and mortgages (25%), and problems in accessing benefits and rights from the National Insurance Institute (Social Security) (23%). Clients served included immigrants and veteran Israelis, Holocaust survivors, Arabs and Jews. 68% of those who turned to us during this reporting period were women.

Plans for the Future
The Mobile Center's plans for the coming months are to continue running Health Days, to recruit more volunteers with specific skills such as fluency in Arabic and Russian, and professional experience in relevant fields. With a new volunteer having recently joined the center, we'll be able to increase the amount of clients we are able to serve.

It's all thanks to YOU
On behalf of YEDID's staff, volunteers, and clients, I thank our supporters for their partnership. The immediate and essential assistance that the center provides to individuals in peripheral towns across the country could never happen without your help. Thank you so much!

Mobile Center Health Day in Rahat
Mobile Center Health Day in Rahat
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Health Day Kiryat Malachi
Health Day Kiryat Malachi

Alex is a 78-year-old man who made Aliyah from Ukraine, and who now lives in Nazareth. Alex turned to the Mobile Center for help in getting his severance pay; Alex had worked for a manpower company for the last six years, and needed the money he was owed to continue to live above the poverty line. Though he had turned to the insurance/pension company responsible for this on his own, after two months of little progress Alex began to lose hope of ever getting the money that was rightfully his. After hearing about YEDID from a friend, Alex approached the center while it was stationed in Karmiel.

A center volunteer filled out all of the required forms with Alex. She then contacted the pension company to understand why they were withholding Alex's severance pay, and to demand that they transfer the payment immediately. It turned out that Alex's employer had neglected to fill out a form one month, which had prevented them from releasing the payment. YEDID contacted the employer, who quickly sent the required document. During Alex's same visit to the center, the volunteer accompanied Alex to the local income tax offices to obtain an exemption from paying taxes on the severance pay he was going to receive. Finally, the company had all of the forms that they needed, and Alex received the NIS 33,000 he was owed.

The goal of YEDID's Mobile Citizen Rights and Health Center is to empower and strengthen residents like Alex of Israel's socioeconomic and geographic peripheries in the areas of health and social rights. The Center's objectives are to help clients navigate the national health system; to provide preventative medical services; and to supply information about legal rights and social benefits in the area of health care and other areas (such as housing and National Insurance, to name just two).

From the beginning of November 2014 through the end of January 2015, the Mobile Center provided 137 clients with rights counseling. The most prevalent subjects for which people turned to the center for non-health related issues during this period were matters related to debt and repossessions (30%), issues concerning public housing and mortgages (22%), and problems in accessing benefits and rights from the National Insurance Institute (Social Security) (19%). Clients served included immigrants and veteran Israelis, Arabs and Jews.

The Mobile Center's plans for the coming months are to continue running Health Days, to recruit more volunteers with specific skills such as fluency in Arabic and Russian, and professional experience in relevant fields. Following Operation Protective Edge in July-August 2014, the Mobile Center spent a day outside Kiryat Malachi's Elderly Day Care Center, providing basic health examinations and medical referrals for all of the Center's inhabitants, most of whom had been unable to leave their houses for long periods of time. Thanks to a generous donation, we have hired an additonal part-time case manager for the Mobile Center. This will allow the center's staff and volunteers to more efficiently handle the packed caseload, especially on days in which the center both receives clients and simultaneously runs health days.

On behalf of YEDID's staff, volunteers, and clients, I thank our supporters for their partnership. The immediate and essential assistance that the center provides to individuals across the country could never happen without your help. Thank you so much!

Health Day Kiryat Malachi
Health Day Kiryat Malachi
Health Day Kiryat Malachi
Health Day Kiryat Malachi
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Getting ready for another day of change making!
Getting ready for another day of change making!
Sara is in her early 40s. The single mother of two grown children - one of whom is a soldier - Sara has struggled to make ends meet for most of her adult life; she has a disability which prevents her from finding stable employment, and subsists entirely off of a monthly NIS 2600 ($680) disability benefit. Over the past year, Sara has been disconnected from her supply of natural gas. The reason? She had an outstanding debt of NIS 700 ($185) to the gas company. Perpetually perched on the edge of poverty, Sara wasn't able to pay the debt in full, let alone find the money for the gas line reattachment fee. With nowhere to cook for herself, Sara turned to cheap junk food alternatives, and her health rapidly deteriorated.  
Over the course of the year, Sara repeatedly petitioned the Amisragas gas company, requesting that her debt be spread out over a number of installments, and that she be allowed to pay with vouchers, as she had no credit card or checkbook with which to make payments. Her request was repeatedly denied, and Sara began to lose hope. A chance meeting with an acquaintance at the supermarket led her to YEDID. After hearing Sara's story, a Mobile Center volunteer immediately contacted the head office of Amisragas. The volunteer submitted a number of documents detailing Sara's economic predicament, and demanded that Sara's request for instaled payments be accepted. Within days of receiving the volunteer's letter, the head office approved Sara's request. She was a given vouchers to use on the 28th of each month to pay for gas, and was reconnected to the gas line for free. Thanks to YEDID, Sara can go back to cooking for herself and get her health back on track.

The goal of YEDID's Mobile Citizen Rights and Health Center is to empower and strengthen residents like Sara of Israel's socioeconomic and geographic peripheries in the areas of health and social rights. The Center's objectives are to help clients navigate the national health system; to provide preventative medical services; and to supply information about legal rights and social benefits in the area of health care and other areas (such as housing and National Insurance, to name just two).

From the beginning of August 2014 through the beginning of November 2014, the Mobile Center provided 144 clients with rights counseling. The most prevalent subjects for which people turned to the center for non-health related issues during this period were matters related to debt and repossessions (28%), issues concerning public housing and mortgages (18%), and problems in accessing benefits and rights from the National Insurance Institute (Social Security) (10%). Clients served included immigrants and veteran Israelis, Arabs and Jews.

The Mobile Center's plans for the coming months are to increase the number of Health Days it runs for senior citizens age 60 and up, to recruit more volunteers with specific skills such as fluency in Arabic and Russian, and professional experience in relevant fields. Thanks to a generous donation, we will soon be able to hire an additonal part-time case manager for the Mobile Center. This will allow the center's staff and volunteers to more efficiently handle the packed caseload, especially on days in which the center both receives clients and simultaneously runs health days. Checking with Irina if this came to pass yet. 

On behalf of YEDID's staff, volunteers, and clients, I thank our supporters for their partnership. The immediate and essential assistance that the center provides to individuals across the country could never happen without your help. Thank you so much!

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After retiring in May 2014, Katya was astounded to discover that she wasn't receiving her old-age benefit; without this benefit, she was afraid that she wouldn't be able to pay her rent, and would find herself, at 68, homeless. Katya immediately turned to Israel's National Insurance Institute (NII), and demanded an explanation as to why she wasn't receiving her old-age benefit. A service representative explained that in all her years of employment, Katya had not worked the minimal amount of months (144) that would make her eligible to receive her old age benefit; upon further investigation, it turned out that she had worked the required amount of months, but that one of her former employers had neglected to report that Katya had worked for him. In order to receive the benefit, Katya would have to gather ten years' worth of pay stubs (66)! Though she was entitled to these pay stubs by right, when Katya went to her former employer to ask for them, he rudely turned her away, and refused to help her.

It was at this point that Katya turned to YEDID's Mobile Center. Although she only had her final paystub from her unpleasant former employer, the pay stub noted the date that Katya had started to work there, and YEDID staff concluded that this was enough information to take action. A YEDID staff member approached the Department of Insurance Continuity at the NII with a letter detailing the sequence of events, and asked the department to update their registrations. Within a week, YEDID was informed that Katya's insurance continuity had been fixed, and that she would begin to receive her old-age benefit. In numbers, this means that over the next 20 years, Katya will receive NIS 30,620. Thanks to YEDID, Katya can enjoy her retirement without the fear of losing the roof over her head.

The goal of YEDID's Mobile Citizen Rights and Health Center is to empower and strengthen residents like Katya of Israel's socioeconomic and geographic peripheries in the areas of health and social rights. The Center's objectives are to help clients navigate the national health system; to provide preventative medical services; and to supply information about legal rights and social benefits in the area of health care and other areas (such as housing and National Insurance, to name just two). Unfortunately, due to the ongoing conflict in Gaza, all of the health days that were planned in the south have been postponed until further notice. 

From the beginning of May 2014 through the beginning of August 2014, the Mobile Center provided 131 clients with rights counseling. The most prevalent subjects for which people turned to the center for non-health related issues during this period were matters related to debt and repossessions (31%), issues concerning public housing and mortgages (20%), and problems in accessing benefits and rights from the National Insurance Institute (Social Security) (15%). Clients served included immigrants and veteran Israelis, Arabs and Jews.

The Mobile Center's plans for the coming months are to continue running Health Days, to recruit more volunteers with specific skills such as fluency in Arabic and Russian, and professional experience in relevant fields. Thanks to a generous donation, we will be able to hire an additonal part-time case manager for the Mobile Center. This will allow the center's staff and volunteers to more efficiently handle the packed caseload, especially on days in which the center both receives clients and simultaneously runs health days.

On behalf of YEDID's staff, volunteers, and clients, I thank our supporters for their partnership. The immediate and essential assistance that the center provides to individuals across the country could never happen without your help. Thank you so much!

 

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Organization Information

YEDID: The Association for Community Empowerment

Location: Jerusalem - Israel
Website:
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YEDID:  The Association for Community Empowerment
Tamara Kaplan
Project Leader:
Tamara Kaplan
Jerusalem, Israel

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