Afikim is a nonprofit organization, established over ten years ago, that provides children at-risk in Israel, and their parents, with tools to escape the cycle of poverty, first and foremost through education. Afikim’s unique projects include a comprehensive and holistic approach that helps not only the child, but his family as well.
Afikim’s various projects provide the children with nutrition, learning, enrichment and love, which encourage them to succeed and flourish, while at the same time, helps their parents acquire improved parenting skills and adapt to a correct economic lifestyle. The long-term programs, lasting 6 years and even more, give the families the tools to help them embark on financial and emotional independence, based on education as a key to success in the modern world.
focus on developing each child’s potential to succeed and advance towards excellence. Each center operates five days a week and is staffed by professional teachers and counselors. The children participate in lessons in Hebrew, mathematics and English; computer classes; enrichment workshops such as dance, music, sport; and lessons in life-skills and values. Each child receives two meals a day at the center – a warm nutritious lunch and a light dinner before returning home.
Afternoon Welfare and Learning Centers (Grades 1-6):
provide an opportunity for children on court order to remain in their homes while receiving relevant care and education in the afternoon hours. As above, the children receive academic assistance, enrichment programs and lessons in life skills, as well as, nutritional meals. Afikim also provides holistic therapeutic care for the family through emotional therapies and ongoing supervision by social workers. (Participation in the Afikim program is officially recognized by the Welfare Department as a positive alternative to removal from family & community to foster care.)
focus on providing academic and emotional help to advance students towards a full matriculation certificate vital to entering an academic institution of higher learning and pursuing a chosen professional career. The older students (grades 11-12) also receive support and guidance in their army preparations with a majority of graduates completing combat duty. Each center operates 3-4 days a week and is staffed with professional teachers and counselors.
provide professional guidance and direction to the parents of Afikim children. The program includes bi-weekly meetings with professional moderators who provide parental guidance; cultural and social activities; individualized family support and, most significantly, workshops in financial literacy and planning. Participating parents receive digitalized grocery shopping cards designed to assist with their everyday expenses.
The financial burden, both of applying to university and attending university, poses a serious deterrent to Afikim graduates who do not have financially ( or otherwise) supportive to pursue advanced studies. Afikei Shachar, coordinated by a professional counselor, offers both post-army guidance and academic scholarships to Afikim graduates. In return, the students volunteer at Afikim centers giving the students an opportunity to give back to the community, and provide ideal role models for the younger Afikim generation.
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Love, joy & happiness – these are the gifts the children receive at the Afikim center. Not to mention – attention, kindness, a comforting atmosphere, academic help and, of course, a warm meal.