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SBC Students In Times of War

Esti Kabada with Glenis Bertfield on behalf of the ESRA Raanana Group

The volunteer work of students in Netanya continues even in times of war  

Students build a Community Scholarship Night 2024

Students who continue their second year in SBC Students Build a Community project and mentor children in the neighborhoods they are living in, receive an opportunity to further volunteer for the community. In return they receive scholarships with joint funding from ESRA and Mifal Hapayis.

Some of the SBC students were drafted into the reserves on 7.10.23 with the outbreak of the war and others carried out emergency work in the Israel Police and the Israel Electric Corporation. Meanwhile, donors contributed, the students volunteered, and on 16 January 2024 a widely-attended scholarship evening was held in the Hefzibah neighborhood of Netanya.

It was not easy to hold this year's scholarship night. All of us are accompanied by a feeling of sadness, worry and uncertainty. But the convergence was important to all of us. We felt that the spirit of volunteerism, especially at a time like this, strengthens us all.

During the evening, two students shared their volunteer stories with the audience and we'd like to share them with you:

Esti Kabada

My name is Esti Kabada, 29 years old from Netanya. I have a master's degree and am currently studying for a diploma in organizational consulting and training management. This is my fourth year in the Students Building a Community project and my fourth year volunteering at the "Warm Home for Girls".

"The Warm Home " is a daily therapeutic framework in the community designed for girls aged 12-18 in situations of risk and distress. The goal is to empower girls, to help them cope with daily problems, and to break out of the at-risk cycle. As part of my volunteer work at Bayit Ham, I conduct personal conversations with the girls, organise group activities on various topics,in general and tutoring in studies and in particular preparation for exams.

I want to share with you a personal story I experienced and am still experiencing with one of the girls. She's in the twelfth grade in a special education class, we met when she was in ninth grade. This is a girl who comes from a difficult socioeconomic situation at home. When she was a student in elementary school she was ostracized and as a result she has social difficulties.

When I met her, it was a time of many changes in the professional staff of the Warm Home. As a result, she lost faith in the team and avoided forming deep personal relationships. Over time, as part of the group activities and personal meetings, we made a close connection. She shared with me that she is very shy in class, she is ashamed to say when she doesn't understand something and she has no class friendsso she has no one to ask after class. Because of this, her grades were very low and she herself no longer believed that she could succeed.

After a conversation with the staff, it was decided that the girl and I would meet once a week in person, mainly for learning, but this was a personal time that brought me and her very close. We studied together every week, not only the academic subjects but we also learned how to learn and what the appropriate learning strategies were. She persevered and showed up, performed tasks I gave her from week to week and her understanding and learning improved, as did her grades and confidence. Her academic successes boosted her self-confidence, she became active in the classroom and she began to socialize with the students. She finished ninth grade with an average of 85, which is twice what it was in the middle of the year, and with a classmate she considers a good friend.

In grades 10-11 we continued to meet once a week, most of the meetings were for learning, but there was also a place for her to share and talk about life. During these two years, the girl passed all the matriculation exams and some even with honors, she made more friendships and at the end of eleventh grade even went on an annual trip for the first time since she was in high school. After finishing her matriculation, she shared with me that she wanted to look for work for the summer vacation. We looked for jobs together, did an interview simulation and she got hired at IKEA.

She is now in the twelfth grade and is currently preparing for the upcoming winter matriculation. She has classmates and school friends that she considers close friends. At our last meeting, we started reading about roles in the army for next year. I'm very proud of her achievements and I feel I've been given the opportunity to volunteer and feel meaningful.

Thank you to ESRA and your donors for the scholarship and for the opportunity to do good.

Fasika Zoudo volunteering with the Sderoth Evacuees

Fasika Zoudo

I am a student of Naturopathy at Wingate College in my fourth year of studies.

I decided to study the profession because I strongly believe in and connect to the whole world of body and soul therapy and feel that my mission in the world is to treat and help people. It gives me a sense of satisfaction and fulfillment.

As part of this scholarship, I volunteer at a school for Sderot evacuees. I help the children with homework and subjects they are struggling with. The team consists of a teacher, a soldier and me, all volunteers; it is exciting to be part of a group of people who want to give and help, especially during this difficult time.

I came there with the feeling that I wanted to give and I can say that I get so much strength and meaning and faith from the amazing children.

I hear stories of evacuees and things that children their age went through and are still going through, and I'm happy to be part of the hug they need during this time 

SBC Netanya scholarship students, volunteers and donors


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Friday, 19 July 2024

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