This video features:
Please click on the names to read their bios.
Elinor Sidi is the Executive Director of the Jerusalem Open House and a veteran activist in the capital’s LGBT community. She first became an activist as a student at Hebrew University where she served as the chairperson of "The Other Tenth," a LGBT student group. From 2006 to 2009, she served in various positions at the Jerusalem Open House, including Director of the Jerusalem Gay Parade, Director of the Community Center and more. Thanks to a Supreme Court petition filed by the Jerusalem Open House in the wake of protests against the annual gay pride parade, the parade is now able to take place in the city center.
Eta is the daughter of Holocaust survivors and is looked after by Eritrean caregivers. Last July, together with 15 year old Oren Rimon, she and other Holocaust survivors arranged a protest march against the expulsion of African refugees from Israel. Hundreds of people took part. Prior to the demonstration, Eta made a public statement about the professionalism of the Eritrean caregivers and condemned the Knesset Members whose incitement tarnished their public image.
Noam Lautman, an Israeli businessman and investor, is following in the footsteps of his father, Dov Lautman, one of Israel’s leading businessmen and philanthropists. Noam has served as a member of the Board of Directors of Delta Galil Textiles since 2001. Prior to that, he served as the new ventures and strategic business planning director of Teva Pharmaceuticals and worked for various high-tech companies. Noam serves as the Vice-President in Israel of NIF’s Board of Directors.
Rabbi Miri Gold was the third woman in Israel to be ordained as a Reform Rabbi. Following a petition she submitted to the Supreme Court, the State announced that it is prepared to recognize rabbis of non-Orthodox communities and fund their salaries in regional councils and farming communities.
Itzik Dessie, Executive Director of Tebeka – Center for Legal Aid and Advocacy for Ethiopian Jews in Israel, immigrated to Israel from Ethiopia alone at age 13. He became Israel's first Ethiopian immigrant to receive a law degree. In 2008, he completed his LL.M. at American University Washington College of Law, as part of the NIF’s Civil Liberties Law Program. Tebeka serves as the main address for hundreds of inquiries each month on the subject of legal rights as well as for complaints regarding discrimination and major infringements of basic rights.
Shira Ben Sasson Furstenberg is the coordinator of NIF's Jewish Pluralism Grants Pool, which works to promote freedom of religion and Jewish pluralism. An Orthodox Jerusalemite, she is one of the founders of the "Baka Egalitarian Minyan."
Dan Yakir is an Israeli lawyer and human rights activist, and legal advisor to the Association of Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI). He is a member of NIF's International Council and received NIF's Award for Defending Human Rights. Israel's leading human rights organization, ACRI is the only organization addressing the full range of human rights issues from protecting freedom of expression and health rights to defending human rights in the occupied territories; from preserving freedom of worship and privacy on the Internet to the struggle for equal rights for all citizens.
Vered Nissim is an artist, feminist and Mizrahi activist for Ahoti– for Women in Israel, a feminist Mizrahi movement that aims to promote economic and social justice from an ethnic and feminist perspective. Ahoti's fair trade store in Tel Aviv, which sells hand-crafted items made by minority women, is the only store in Israel operating under the Fair Trade Principles.
Doron Tsabari is a director, editor, actor, scriptwriter and producer. From the start of his career, he has connected social activism and the media. Tsabari served as Chairman of the Israel Directors’ Association and is responsible for the launch of original productions on Channel 1, Israel’s leading public television station. Tsabari is a member of NIF's International Council.
Rotem Ilan is the founder of Israeli Children, the leading organization in the struggle against the expulsion of the children of foreign workers and their families who consider Israel their only home. Ilan and the organization won the Dror Prize for Social Change in 2010.
Eli Bareket is Executive Director of Memizrach Shemesh, Center for Jewish Social Leadership. The organization cultivates leaders and trains activists who are dedicated to the values of communal responsibility and social action rooted in all Jewish traditions including those of the Sephardi and Mizrachi heritage.
Hanna Barag is an activist in Machsom Watch, an Israeli women's peace movement opposed to Israeli control of the occupied territories and the denial of the right of movement of Palestinians in their own land. Since 2001, women activists serve as observers at IDF checkpoints deep in the West Bank, along the Separation Fence, on neglected dust roads, on main highways, at the Civil Administration offices and military courts, documenting what happens there on a daily basis.
Rita Brudnik is the founder and co-director of Fishka, a creative multicultural community in Tel Aviv. She immigrated to Israel from Riga, Latvia when she was 10. Fishka promotes social entrepreneurship and multicultural activities to empower Russian-speaking young people and create an equal dialogue between the Russian-speaking community and Israeli society. Alongside other partners, the organization has promoted the campaign for civil marriages in Israel through public civil weddings, which have created a major media buzz.
Naomi Moravia, a veteran social activist, currently serves as chair of the Israeli Human Rights Organization for People with Disabilities. The organization represents Israelis with a wide range of disabilities, including physical and mental, with the goal of raising awareness and integrating people with disabilities into all areas of life as citizens with equal rights. The organization recently received an allocation of NIS 200 million from the Ministries of Finance and Welfare for promoting the rights and welfare of children with disabilities.
Mickey Gitzin is Executive Director of Israel Hofshit, a non-partisan civil movement working for a free, pluralistic and democratic society in the spirit of Zionism and Israel’s Declaration of Independence. The movement, which has hundreds of volunteers, works to promote public transportation on Shabbat and civil marriages and is active in the struggle against the exclusion of women from the public sphere. The movement recently took part in initiating the Gay Pride Parade in Ra’anana and other locations.
Eran is a social activist at Beit Ha'am in Tel Aviv, a center which serves as a venue for social initiatives and diverse organizations. It emerged as an important convener during the 2011social protests and plans to establish centers elsewhere in the country.
For over 10 years, Sha’anan Street has been the lead singer of "Hadag Nachash," a popular Israeli band. Guided by the principle that culture should be accessible to all, Street launched “Festival for a Shekel.” Street is a member of NIF's International Council.
Rula Alatauna serves as Executive Director of Alnuhud, an organization promoting education for Bedouin women. The organization runs a college preparatory program which includes economic, social, cultural and personal support and an empowerment and enrichment program for Bedouin girls in junior high school. The organization also arranges community activities for Bedouin students together with other recognized institutions and organizations.
Yehuda Buchacho is a volunteer in the Observers Forum of "Kick Racism and Violence Out of Soccer." A former youth player, he lives and breathes soccer with a vision of camaraderie and solidarity and not violence. The Observers Forum, which has been active for ten years, sends dozens of volunteers to soccer matches around the country to monitor racism in the belief that change that begins in soccer will influence the rest of society.
Shani Goldberg is the founder of the Social Guard, an organization that grew out of the social protests in the summer of 2011. The organization aims to ensure an on-going and determined citizens’ presence in the Knesset to counter pressure from the business sector and remind MKs that the public will not forget its demand for social justice.
Mor Rubinstein is a member of the Public Knowledge Workshop that was established following the social justice protests in the summer of 2011. The Public Knowledge Workshop is a volunteer-run, non-profit organization devoted to making government data easily accessible on the Internet for every citizen in order to promote greater citizen’s involvement in the democratic process.
Yonatan Adna and Daniel Mulla work as community youth counselors at the non-profit organization Friends by Nature, which promotes community empowerment among Ethiopian-Israelis. Friends by Nature’s community-based approach has been highly successful in strengthening Ethiopian youth, providing enrichment and tutoring and eradicating high school drop out. Yuvi Tshuva, the founder of Friends by Nature, was chosen to light one of the Independence Day torches in 2010.
Abed Shahada is a Lod resident and activist in SHATIL's Shared Cities Program, which promotes Arab residents' rights in shared cities in areas such as housing, infrastructure and land by strengthening local organizations.
Leora, age 10, and Hadas, age 7, dream of a future Israel where everyone is free and safe to be who they are.