The Children are Our Heritage

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Children are a heritage from the Lord, offspring a reward from him.
Psalms 127:3

In a few weeks Israel will be celebrating the joyous holiday of Purim. One of the main activities of this celebration is the sending of Mishloach Manot (Gift Baskets) from family to family. This holiday is one that is especially memorable for children. They will dress up in costume and participate in street parades.

Unfortunately, there are many children whose parents cannot afford to involve their children in this festive time as a result of their economic circumstances. Many children rely on basic nourishment at after school centers, where they congregate in the afternoons.

Israel Today has been committed for many years to ensuring a quality life for all Israeli children. This year, as in previous years, we will be concentrating our efforts to help children from needy families to enable them to enjoy this time of the year.

Through the generosity of our subscribers and readers of the magazine, Israel Today will be able to:

  • provide Mishloach Manot to needy families
  • support underprivileged children, for example, by providing meals and financing extra-mural activities


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Child Support Grants - Yes Or No?

Posted on 7/7/2013 by in israel Israel Today Children support poverty budget cuts

Reducing child allotments was the topic of furious debate in the Knesset last Sunday. The end-of-year Financial Budget is on the table and proposes a blanket reduction of monthly child support from NIS175 to NIS140 (about $37 US). All parents receive this child support grant through the National Insurance Institute of Israel, for children under the age of 18.

According to current statistics, one in three Israeli children now lives below the poverty line. Estimates show that the proposed child allotment cuts will plunge 50,000 more children below this line, also significantly increasing the at-risk child population.

The Finance Ministry's intention behind the proposed child support reduction is to encourage both parents to work. As the sociocultural milieu is so nurturing for young people, Israel is probably the only country in the world where a mother working would not detrimentally affect small children's upbringing and emotional welfare. However, work is not readily available in many areas of the country, and preschool childcare can be expensive, cancelling out the financial advantage of two salaries in the home. Also, mothers who want large families are not physically able to work during childbearing years; or they place a burden on the workplace to finance maternity leave.

The Knesset Finance Committee has been unable to reach a vote on the matter, as there must be certainty that the new policy will not sharply increase already existing child poverty. Already these disadvantaged children make up one third of Israel's future. Intervention is needed now. As an Israel Today reader, you can make a difference for a contribution of just $15. Click here *AND all this summer, Israel Today will match your donation - together we can overcome the poverty statistics of families with children!

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