Tonight, Wednesday, December 21, Israel’s Channel Two producer Keshet will air the pilot program of a new documentary series supported by the New Israel Fund (NIF) on the activists and organizations that make up Israel’s social justice movement. The New Israel Fund is the principal funder and advocate of progressive social causes in Israel, and has funded more than 300 Israeli NGOs since its founding in 1979.
For the past few months, NIF has been working with Keshet to produce the series, entitled “Against All Odds.” It tells the stories of men and women, who, with assistance from NIF and its training and consulting arm SHATIL, rallied their communities and became catalysts for positive change.
The pilot program portrays the struggle of Chana Kehat, a leader of Israel’s Orthodox feminist movement. A mother of six, Kehat is a resident of Neve Daniel in Gush Etzion and the founder of the Religious Women’s Forum (Kollech), which advocates for gender equality within the framework of halacha [Jewish religious law]. The Religious Women’s Forum was established with assistance from NIF and continues to operate with its support today.
Beginning Wednesday, January 16, 2006, the series will air each week until the end of April. Reruns of the series will be screened again in the summer and translated into English for use in North America and Europe.
“We at the New Israel Fund are extremely proud that Israel’s civil society is receiving this attention,” said Eliezer Ya’ari, NIF Israel Executive Director. “Our issues, including civil rights, economic and social justice, and religious pluralism, are critically important to Israel’s future – and the activists who lead these causes deserve a voice and a presence for the public.”
The New Israel Fund is the leading funder of the human and civil rights movements in Israel. NIF is a 26-year-old international partnership of Israelis, North Americans and Europeans committed to a stronger Israeli democracy. NIF addresses issues of civil and human rights, social and economic justice and tolerance for all Israelis. In addition to its own public education and coalition-building work, NIF funds and trains grassroots not-for-profit organizations to become more effective proponents for social change.