ESRAmagazine

Thanks to ESRA Welfare Funds

The ESRA Welfare Fund gives grants to families or individuals who have fallen on hard times and for whom extra financial assistance keeps them going with hope for the future. It also supplements educational shortfalls to financially stressed college and university students, enabling them to continue their studies. The Welfare Committee meets monthly to discuss each application for assistance.
The Fund is open to all Israeli citizens, and applications for help can be made online https://www.esra.org.il/projects/education-and-welfare-community-projects/scholarships-and-grants.html. Applicants must provide some personal information, and generally a letter of recommendation from a social worker is requested to accompany the application. With the decision to help as many as we can, the grants provided are small compared with the recipients' needs. But every little bit helps and we know that ESRA's contributions are getting people back on their feet. The heartfelt letters of thanks attest to that, and it is very gratifying to hear from students that the support they received

enabled them to complete their studies and subsequently embark on their chosen careers. 


April, 2020 

Pesach Aid

Linor S., Raanana
Wow! An enormous thank you to you! I am so moved that I will make breathing space now
especially as I am on unpaid leave. I and my children thank you with our whole hearts! An
enormous thank you! Thank you so very much!

Berry Hyman, Family Social Worker, Raanana Municipality
Thank you with all my heart for the assistance you gave to several of the families in my care.
They were so very emotional to receive it and thank you too from the bottom of their
hearts. 


March 2020 

Crisis Aid during Corona

Ita Kaufman, Social Worker, Paamonim Organization, Ashdod
I want to thank you personally for the financial aid you gave to three immigrant families in
our program "Klita Bemeytava" during Corona time. This is not an easy period, and so much
more so when it hits families who are anyway coping with complex challenges and
difficulties in addition to the present crisis.


April, 2019 

Scholarship for Theater and General Studies

Anais Horsmann, Haifa University
I am writing you this letter in appreciation for your donation.
I am 25 years old, and immigrated to Israel by myself two and a half years ago. I currently
study and live in Haifa University. Emigrating to Israel was a life changing experience since I
learn how to be independent and deal with difficulties and obstacles. I consider myself as a
person who seeks constant knowledge and learn new languages easily. I believe that
languages are inherent to any culture, therefore learning the country's official language (in
this case Hebrew), helped me to be more in touch with the people and with my Jewish roots.
I am currently studying Theater and General Studies (double mayor). I see Theater as a way
to make myself stronger and as a therapeutic tool. I am planning to study Drama Therapy as
an M.A.; hence I have to take psychology related courses from the General Studies degree. I
see myself in the future working with young women that suffer from eating disorders. This
topic is really interesting to me because it affects a considerable number of women and I
believe we still have to find new methods / techniques to deal with it.
Receiving this financial aid helped me to focus more on my studies and worry less about the
lack of funds. With this scholarship I am able to invest more in books related to my study
field and workshops. Moreover, this scholarship will help me with buying food and other
basic expenses (rent, electricity). This financial aid will also be used to pay part of my tuition
fee. I am truly thankful for your help, I could not be able to keep on studying without it. My
studies are really important in my life and not being able to continue them will be a truly
unpleasant and a hopeless situation. 


March, 2019 

Scholarship for medical studies
Keren Maruvka, Haifa
Thank you so much for your kindness and for the willingness to meet with me, to
know and to hear me. I promise to study diligently; to be an attentive, professional
and compassionate doctor; to help anyone who wants it regardless of their financial
situation or the place they coming from.
I promise to always love people with all of my heart and to keep my heart open for
every human being. 


July 2015 

Scholarship will cover my expenses. Thank you

JZ, Zichron Yaakov

I wanted to give my appreciation for the wonderful help of the scholarship that will be used to cover expenses for my studies as a registered nurse. Thank you ESRA staff, volunteers and social worker Liron.


Thank you ESRA Welfare Fund

Aviva, Sderot

I would like to express my gratitude and appreciation for the help my family received from ESRA's Welfare Fund. I hope you will continue with your efforts that bring comfort, support and pleasure to people.


May 2013 

Thank you ESRA Community Fund


Shimon and Ruchama F., Beit Shemesh

For giving of your time, for taking an interest in our troubles and for your great assistance in our time of need. Thanks to you, our daughter, Batsheva, is so happy that we have been able to fulfill her desire to function like other children her age. There is no way to describe the pleasure that this has brought to the whole family who have been aware of our financial problems and worried about the funding for the necessary medical equipment. And you with your generous hearts have helped us enormously. Let us hope that everything will work out. We bless you in our names and in the names of our children and of all our family who appreciate you and pray for you. May G-d shower on you uncountable blessings of happiness, prosperity, health, satisfaction and success. And may He grant all your wishes, for goodness and happiness. Amen.


Alona S., Ramat HaSharon
For the grant you have given me from the Breast Cancer Emergency Relief Fund. It warms my heart and soul and helps to get me through this difficult time. Thank you.


Esti Friedman, LCSW Welfare Department, Zichron Yaakov
For your student scholarship to Bracha. We greatly appreciate all the efforts that the ESRA Caesarea/Zichron Yaakov branch has made on her behalf.
We are grateful that we can turn to you in a time of need in order to better serve our clients. Thank you for all that you do.


February 2013 

Thank you ESRA Welfare Fund


Esther C., Givatayim
Thank you from the bottom of my heart for the scholarship.


Hodaya Basha, Social Worker, Kiryat Malachi
Due to the A.W. family's pressing needs, I turned to you for aid. Thank you deeply for your speedy response and your donation. I hope you will continue in your diverse activities, to improve, even if only a little, the quality of life for immigrant families who are struggling to cope with many difficulties.


Ella Y, Netanya
I was very happy to receive your check from the Shari Mendes Fund which will help me pay for food and medication that is not covered by the health fund. It will also help with paying bus fare for the many buses I need to take to clinics where I receive medical care for my illness! I wish you good health.


Iris Weinstein, Principal, Naamat Technological High School, Petach Tikva.
Our deep thanks, in the name of young Natalie C. and her family, for your generous donation. This will help cover the full cost of her studies. The school is committed to both the welfare of the students as well as their educational achievements. Your donation is very heartwarming and admirable. May you always be among those who give.


September 2012 

Thank you ESRA Breast Cancer Fund:

Gila H.
For your grant of NIS 1500 which enabled me to acquire an artificial breast, new bras, travel expenses to various hospitals, and medical tests. My income is an invalid's grant of NIS 2400, so your contribution was of vital importance.


Ella S.
For the financial grant I received from you. Before I was diagnosed with the disease I did not work and was looking for employment, which I had to stop doing once my illness was discovered which worsened my situation even more severely. The grant helped me through a very difficult period in my life, both economically and emotionally.

Yishar Koah.


July 2012 

Thank you ESRA for helping immigrant students

Orli Ben-Shlush, Social Worker, Administration for Olim students, Haifa
I wish to extend my heartfelt gratitude to your organization, staff, volunteers, donors for your boundless dedication to the cause of giving help to immigrant students who are supported by the Administration for Olim, in the Haifa area.

In my capacity as a social worker for one and a half years, I have witnessed many heartbreaking stories of students who fail to concentrate and succeed in their studies due to enormous economic difficulties. Some students came here on their own; others have families in severe financial circumstances who barely manage. Needless to say, they are not able to support their children with their education. In all these cases the students find it impossible to pay their way and ultimately drop out of the program.

In my function as a social worker, I try as best as I can to assist in the social, family, personal and financial aspects, telling them it is their turn now to explore their chance for education, to advance and to excel - everyone according to his/her ability.

Due to cuts in funding, there is almost nowhere to turn for assistance for the students; only in cases of very serious illness or death of a relative can the student expect to receive help.

During my term of duty you were the only organization to which we could address our pleas for assistance. I have sent you dozens of applications, and each and every one has been treated with an amazing response to the requests and needs. The students have told me how significant it was for them to be so humanely rewarded.

The financial aid, while I was in charge, amounted to tens of thousands of shekels, and every student's scholarship received played a crucial part in their ability to continue their studies.

I hope you realize the importance of your giving and the marvelous job you do. Your personal touch in dealing with every application (such as phoning for missing details so as not to delay the needed aid) and providing the financial assistance to those students who require it is much appreciated.


April 2012 

Thank you ESRA Welfare Fund for making it possible to fulfill our dreams


Danit J. Ariel
Thank you for a grant of 2000 shekels which I received from you. I am nearing the end of my studies and my husband is a trainee accountant. We are both new immigrants with much of our family still in Canada. For now, we are investing in our future and at the same time coping with the difficulties of the present. The generous grant will help me to invest more time in my studies and will lighten the burden on me and on my family. I thank you with all my heart. It is heartwarming to know that there are people who care about new immigrants. I hope that I will be able to repay this investment by giving back to the community in the future.


Vasily H. Ramat Gan
It is not easy for new immigrants to study at university, considering the problems of learning the language, and of being accepted at university. New immigrants also encounter economic problems during their studies, such as paying student fees, covering board and lodging costs. All these problems present serious obstacles in the way of new immigrants achieving their degrees or even being accepted at university. As a result, they cannot fulfill their dream of a higher education. I too have experienced these problems, and so I would like to thank the ESRA Fund and the people who donate to the fund with all my heart. With your financial grant, you have made it possible for me and others like me to fulfill our dreams of achieving university degrees.


Shiran A. Tiberias
Your prestigious grant will help me greatly. Thank you for enabling us students to develop within our chosen field. As I'm writing this letter, I have tears in my eyes - tears of joy because my family and I are in a very bad state financially. We had nobody to turn to for help, and I had no money to return home, and even the college website was closed to me. And then your grant arrived, like a light in the dark, and brightened up my life. It has given me the chance to pay for the rest of my studies, and allowed me to continue studying without financial worries. I promise you that I will do everything I can to advance and succeed so that I too can help people like me in the future. Hopefully, with your help, we will be able to raise a new generation to create a brighter and more successful future.


September 2011 

Thank you ESRA Community Fund


Avi Farag, Director, Neot Shaked Community Center, Netanya

This is the sixth year that the very generous contribution of the ESRA Fund has facilitated the Pesach Seder at the Netanya community center - Neot Shaked. Led by Rabbi Moshe Amar, participants were new immigrants, soldiers and invalids - a true ingathering. For many this was their first celebration of a Seder and the experience was made even more meaningful by the volunteers from Wingate College and Chabad who arranged the tables and served. The contribution of ESRA continued into the following day with a post-Seder meal. My deepest thanks to Rika Meyerowitz who worked unceasingly, together with the ESRA Fund, to financially assure this Pesach Seder. My thanks on behalf of the 250 participants and the wish that we all share in next year's Seder.


Shimon M., Technion, Haifa

My deepfelt thanks for your meaningful assistance of NIS 2,000. I am a BA chemistry student in my final semester. Your assistance was crucial for the completion of my studies; it allowed me to finish my degree rather than leave in order to support my family. My wife and daughter also add their thanks. Should any member of the ESRA Fund happen to be at the Technion, I happily extend an invitation to visit with my family at our home.


Beitshish K., Sderot

I am a single mother and have a daughter in 1st grade. I am a 3rd year student, studying for a B.A. in social sciences at Sapir College. I also work half time in the field of education, mostly with Ethiopian youth in Sderot. Thank you for your generosity and desire to help me and ease my difficulties. You have helped me march forward so that my money problems will not be the main hindrance to my success.


Shulamit Chen, Social Worker for Youth, Beersheva

My sincerest and deepest thanks for your significant financial help in strengthening youth. You have always helped us whenever we have turned to you.


Banchy K.

Your scholarship has enabled me to concentrate on my studies – it is a great help for me. Thank you.


Yehudit L.

Words cannot express my appreciation for the scholarship which enables me to continue my studies.


Igor P., Ariel College

Your scholarship will enable me to complete my degree and will ease my life at this stage. My deepest thanks.


Alexander B.

You have helped me financially to get over my difficult period, thank you.


Asmariyahu, Ben Gurion University

I am 30 years old and am so happy that you have given me a scholarship. I am studying for a masters degree in gerontology at Ben Gurion University. My first degree was in behavioral sciences at Ariel College. We are 11 children in our family and our parents brought us up with tremendous efforts, and of course we were not spoilt, for which we are grateful and thank them for everything. My financial position is terribly difficult and your help is like manna from heaven. I sincerely hope that in the future I will be able to help others as much as possible and bring up a family in Israel. Thank you for this opportunity.


Yulia W.

You have given me the opportunity not only to pay my tuition fees, but to finish my degree with dignity, to contribute to society and to work in a field that I love. From the moment I came to Israel I dreamed of a profession that would realize my potential and enable me to contribute to the society. I did everything I could to come closer to my dream, and your donation has brought me even closer – thank you for that opportunity. What you do is blessed and significant to our Israeli society and the Zionist movement. You give hope and belief that our society is not indifferent to the difficulties of others, and at hard times there is somebody that will extend a helping hand to overcome the hardships. I cannot thank you enough and hope that one day I too will be able to help others as you have done for me. I want to believe that as a social worker I will be able to spread the message of giving to my clients. You have given me a personal example and a model for imitation.

.

Ilanit A., Petach Tikva

I am studying social work at Haifa University and am grateful that the university gave me this opportunity and opened a door to me to study what I wanted so badly. It wasn't easy for me to leave my parents as I am the eldest and I helped my family financially. But they believed it was very important for me to study and would not hear of me missing this big opportunity to study and they encouraged me to leave home and to go to study in Haifa. The large distance from my family is not easy for me, nor for them financially and emotionally. My parents would like to help me financially, but don't have with what, and I can no longer help them. Your scholarship will enable me to cover my overdraft and to start to breathe a bit and to look for work in the summer to pay back my loans from friends and to pay my debt to Bituach Leumi and to pay the down payment for my studies next year and to save for the beginning of my studies. I have no words to express my thanks and emotion for your charity to me and to other students. You are good people who care about the academic education of students in Israel; you look after us and make sure that our financial difficulties will not stop us from succeeding and completing our degrees.


September 2010 

Thank you for the generous scholarships

Irena M., Rechasim

Your scholarship helped me a lot in my daily life and definitely lessened my financial worries. It helps me give more time to my study for my degree and it takes a lot of pressure off me in different ways. I pray there will be more people like you. Thank you very much. 


Michal N., Netivot
I wish to thank you very sincerely for the financial aid I received for my studies. I really appreciate the effort and attention you gave me with my daily problems and I want to add that your help has given me hope and motivation for the future. As you know, my family has serious financial problems and the base you helped me with is something I will never forget, my family will remember it forever too. May there be many like you in Israel! 



Yulia B., Beer Sheva

I came to Israel on my own from the former Soviet Union in March 2003 in the framework of the Aleh Program. I decided to go for academic studies. I have completed two and a half years with financial aid from the Jewish Agency and the Ministry of Absorption. This financial help ended – when I have only one semester left to study. For lack of funds, I was considering leaving my studies. I owe ESRA a huge thank you – because of you I will realize my dream and complete my studies. I will never forget the help, I will never forget where it came from. So thank you with all my heart. 



Ella F., Ariel

I wish to apologize in advance about the length of my letter. The reason is that I have a lot to say, a lot to thank you for and it seems almost impossible to find the words to thank you. My story is similar to that of most immigrants : aliyah, adjusting, difficulties and many challenges to face. From the moment I decided to study, I knew I had not chosen an easy path. I knew I would have to survive my three years of studying for my degree, I would need to work to sustain myself, I would have to live in the dorms with strangers as my flat-mates, I would have to share notes with Israeli students. I hoped I would get some help, not necessarily money, but good recommendations for the process of getting a degree. I am sorry to say that I had to learn the hard way, all by myself. I moved along with a lot of trial and error. On the financial side, I submitted many requests to different funds each year and all I was lucky to receive was from the Students' Council in my first two years and a one-time scholarship from the College. I convinced myself that I will not lose hope. I volunteered in the community, I took part in the PERACH program. I also helped students with mathematics and statistics. 

Despite all this, I went through a difficult time and couldn't understand why all my efforts weren't appreciated, why couldn't I get some financial help. I began asking myself what I am doing in Israel. I would get so much love and support if I would go to my parents and I wouldn't have to face all the problems I have here. I am still in Israel because I didn't choose the easy way. In our meeting I discovered that there are people who care, I felt the listening and true concern, your will to help others. I found people who dedicated their time to others, listened to each one and discussed each one's requests and difficulties. I felt I was appreciated and this gave me strength to continue and progress. I also felt that I wasn't alone and someone cared about me. In short, all my gratitude and appreciation to you! I wish you happiness and feel you deserve the best for all the good you did for me and for others. Thank you very much. 


Louisa K., Rishon Lezion

I want to thank you for the NIS 8,000 scholarship. This scholarship has allowed me to pay for my last year of studies to receive my first degree. It has helped me to realize a dream and that is to finish my first degree in mathematics which I find interesting and love. Later on I hope to work in the sciences, an area which interests me. With thanks to ESRA many students get the chance to realize their dreams and aims. ESRA is helping students to continue their studies when they don't have the possibility to pay for themselves. By doing this, you are improving the Israeli society. I have high aims for myself and hope to work in the development of science in Israel. For all those you have given scholarships, for all those to whom you will give scholarships and for myself, thank you very sincerely. 


Dennis Z., Haifa
This letter is to thank you very sincerely for the scholarship you gave me. I feel I want you to get to know the person to whom you gave the scholarship. I was born in the former Soviet Union and came to Israel with my parents and sister when I was 11 in 1996. We started off in Hadera, moved to Afula where I finished elementary school and we then moved to Haifa. I adjusted pretty well. I befriended older "new" immigrants who helped a lot with the language. Soon after the move, my parents got divorced and I lost contact with my father. I finished school with good grades in 2003 when I enlisted to the army. I completed my army service in 2006, did my psychometric test and registered that same year to start studying nursing at the Haifa University. I didn't realize how hard the studies would be and how much time and effort would be necessary. I am now in my 4th year. My sister is studying chemistry at the Technion – she has a scholarship from the army and will be enlisted when she gets her degree, my mother works as a domestic helper. I hope I will succeed in being a good professional and in this way help my patients. Your help has been very good for me in my final year of studies, I can definitely study more and work less. 


Tagnia P., Yavne
I am 3rd year student in Social Science at the Ashkelon College. For the last two years I have faced a difficult time in my life, and it isn't over. I want to thank you with all my heart for the opportunity with my difficult studies. I have been given new opportunities which I believe will bring out the uniqueness in me and help me achieve my academic degree. Your scholarship has made it easier for me to study and finance myself with pride. I feel an inner peace as a result of receiving the scholarship. This period of my life is not easy and it constantly bothers me how I will finance myself. Again, thank you for your help, my Angels. With a lot of love.

Mila T., Gival Shmuel

I wish to thank you for the help you give people like me. There is no doubt that through your dedicated work you help many people. The work done in ESRA is "holy". Well done and continue.


Stanislav Y., Or Akiva

I want to thank all the people in ESRA who helped me to get a scholarship for my studies in 2009-2010. It is with thanks to you that I'll be able to study another year and then start working in my field. It is important to me to be an engineer, and to be an example to my family. 


Alexei F., Beer Sheva
I am studying electrical engineering at the "Sammy Shimon" College in Beersheva. I want to thank you very much for taking my case into account and deciding to grant me a scholarship which allowed me to spend more time studying and not worrying about finding more work. I am amazed that you could meet me and decide to help me – something that one cannot take for granted. You have in fact pushed me on my way to success in life. I hope that someday in the future when my financial situation is more stable, I too will be able to help someone – just like you have helped me. May you be blessed – you are doing "holy" work. 


February 2010 

Thank you ESRA Community Fund for:

Raisa S., Sderot
Your donation of NIS 1000. We are new immigrants, are looking for relevant job opportunities, have language restraints and d
o not yet have a source of income. Sometime in the future we would like to be part of your social activities and community projects.


Gila A., Ashdod
Your quick and generous help of NIS 1000 worth of food coupons. It will get us over a difficult period.


Dr. Rami Klein, Dean of Students, Ruppin Academic Center
Two scholarships, each of NIS 1000, for two Ethiopian students studying in our mediation program. Your donation is important and helps the students cope with their financial difficulties.


Irit Hadani & the Social Services Staff , Municipality of Gedera
Your many good deeds which we greatly appreciate.


September 2007 

Thank you Esra Community Fund

Dr. Shalva Weil, Director of Program for Training Outstanding Leadership in Education of Immigrants from Ethiopia, Hebrew University

For the generous scholarships for 5 students, Melissa G., Yigal S., Yatiyahu M., Smadar M. and Rakefet D., which will greatly help them to succeed in their studies.

Tali Nadir, Welfare Dept., Ramat HaSharon
Thank you, Esra Ramat HaSharon, for being a community blessed with the ability to give and love and thank you from us and from the families for distributing food parcels on Pesach. This is the meaning of true community partnership.


Aya Ofer, Social Worker, Chimes Israel, Dutch Center
For dental care to Tal O. D., a child with special needs who has severe cerebral palsy and multiple developmental problems. Your donation warmed our hearts to know that parents of special needs children are not alone in their constant struggle to help their children advance and realize their potential.


Yehudit M., Modiin Elite
For your donation of NIS 1,000 for help in buying a hearing aid for our daughter, Ayala. Thank you for answering our request to help us in our efforts to give our daughter the tools and the opportunities to adapt to and succeed in a regular society and to hear despite her handicap.

Your help came at a moment when we had very large expenses, far above our means, in trying to improve and help Ayala to hear and to better understand her environment at home and in the kindergarten.

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