We are #FedProud of overseas partner JDC for establishing a historic milestone in government-philanthropic cooperation with the creation of the Joint Government-Philanthropy NGO Relief Fund. This fund represents not only a vital financial lifeline to struggling Israeli NGOs but is also a statement of joint vision between government and philanthropy. With the creation of this fund, the government is recognizing Israel's NGO sector as a central pillar of Israeli society and the key role of philanthropic investment.
The coronavirus pandemic hit Israel's nonprofit sector hard: Some 50% of workers were furloughed and 25% of organizations ceased operations entirely. Following a year of three elections but no budget, the sector was already in a precarious state. The pandemic reduced its capacity even further. It was this threat to Israeli NGOs’ survival that prompted JDC’s Joint-Elka to initiate a first-of-its-kind partnership between the Israeli government and a group of major philanthropic foundations – a NIS 53 million relief fund supported 75:25 by government and philanthropy respectively. Now, Israeli NGOs who were not eligible for previous rounds of government compensation can apply for financial aid to help their organizations endure this extremely tough period.
Organizations that apply for the grant will also be offered an array of services to build their capacity and strengthen their efficiency and effectiveness through a specially-tailored menu created specifically for this process.
The open dialogue that is taking place between the philanthropic sector and the Israeli government is an unparalleled systematic change and has created trust and a true partnership that is set to outlast the Fund and benefit Israel society in the future.