The fund in action

Education for emergency and rehabilitation

The Israel-Gaza war, which erupted after Hamas’ horrendous attack on October 7, 2023, presents Israeli society with the gravest challenges. Similar to past crises, it is the responsibility and honor of educational staff, who play a central role in society, to protect and support their students. Within the educational community, both formal and informal, educators possess the deepest understanding of students and their families. It is therefore in their hands to provide personalized and intimate support to strengthen student resilience.
Educators are the pillar of the education system, maintaining regular contact with students and collaborating with parents to identify their needs and devise personalized educational solutions. These dedicated professionals not only support the children through these chaotic times but also contribute to their psychological well-being.

What steps did we take?

The Business Incubator

Support and guidance in developing business initiatives to address current challenges

The Educational War Room

Immediate and Focused Support of Educational Initiatives Nationwide

Essence of Learning

Pedagogical training for educational staff working with children aged 0-9 to reduce ongoing toxic stress while advancing developmental capacities

The Call for Proposals

The Fund’s annual flagship program, with an emphasis on initiatives that address the present challenges.
Especially during the current crisis, which affects a generation facing deep national trauma, educational staff play a central role. The staff are navigating an ongoing period of loss, mourning, socioeconomic stress, and accompanying psychological, cognitive, and educational challenges. The actions led by these educational staff are likely to have a profound ripple effect, benefitting both the educational system and its surrounding community.
Alongside the known challenges, there is a lesser-known neurological phenomenon. It is vital to take action across all layers of education, out of a deep awareness of this phenomenon. In crisis zones, the child’s nervous system is disrupted by ongoing toxic stress, which becomes a persistent physiological response with lasting repercussions. Toxic stress affects the child’s ability to form new learning pathways within the expected developmental timeline, hindering learning and exacerbating an already stressful situation. When children are exposed to toxic stress, they are likely to regress to earlier developmental stages and are unable to participate in age-appropriate learning activities.
War is not the sole contributor to ongoing toxic stress; factors such as poverty, abuse and neglect, and maternal severe depression are also recognized as potential triggers. A national crisis, like the one we are currently facing, or possible future crises – such as earthquakes and epidemics – can add to existing stressors. The probable outcome is developmental regression and the unwarranted placement of children into special education programs.
Research shows that exposure to ongoing toxic stress in childhood can impact children’s health into adulthood. For example, a 20-year study conducted by the University of South Carolina, published in the Journal of the American Heart Association, demonstrated that life patterns characterized by high levels of chronic stress in childhood serve as clear predictors of indicators suggesting an increased susceptibility to heart disease in adulthood.