In recognition of the extreme needs in Kiryat Malachi, YEDID opened a Citizen Rights Center there in 2006. The Center is Directed by Yoland Elush who works with about 15 dedicated volunteers from the local community and local student bodies. Many of the volunteers are former clients who have been empowered to help others as they were helped themselves.
The majority of YEDID clients in Kiryat Malachi are recent immigrants, especially from Ethiopia and the Caucas region of the FSU. YEDID considers the willingness of Ethiopian new immigrants (nearly half our clients – see pie chart) to come to the Center a great success, as outreach to the Ethiopian community is often impeded by the closed and suspicious nature of the community. The Center has become the address for citizens to receive assistance in overcoming economic and social obstacles and local agencies often refer clients to YEDID.
In 2010, the Center assisted 833 local residents. In December 2009, YEDID dedicated a new Volunteerism and Rights Center in partnership with Naamat and the City of Kiryat Malachi. The new Center serves as a model for further cooperation between the Municipality and the voluntary sector.
To empower local Ethiopian community leaders, YEDID launched a Leadership Development Program specifically designed with and for the community. In 2010, the participants took part in workshops that covered topics such as the problems facing the Ethiopian community in Kiryat Malachi and how to create change, and at the beginning of 2011 they launched a project to address problems facing Ethiopian high school students.
In 2011 the Center is also implementing two Let's Get to Work! employment readiness programs for chronically unemployed women. These projects are being run in cooperation with the National Insurance Institute.
The Kiryat Malachi Citizen Rights Center is generously supported by
The Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona,
The Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle,
and Jewish Federation & Family Services, Orange County