Sunday, November 23, 2014

Marketing and Fundraising, Galore!

By Mona Mizikovsky
ENP Intern, MASA Teaching Fellow in Rishon L'Zion

The last week at ENP has been all about marketing and fundraising.  

I have been given the opportunity to redesign the marketing card that ENP uses at various events.  I've been having a lot of fun looking into different options for the card but I am hoping to do something related to Ethiopian food because that is one of my favourite things about Ethiopian culture.  I was researching berebere last Thursday and apart from being ridiculously spicy, it seems to be a wonder spice that can basically be added to anything.

Apart from marketing, I have also been finalising a few grant applications, some to big corporations and others to smaller foundations.  It only costs $1,000 USD for each child to take part in the scholastic assistance program with this covering the extra tutoring, lunch and other activities, like field trips, for the whole year.  I really hope these organisations see the great work that ENP is doing and help fund additional participants particularly in the scholastic assistance program.

It was also really interesting to see the photos and hear about the Tiferet Mission to Israel of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago.  The Mission visited the Youth Outreach Centre in Petach Tikva.  The groups shared stories and learnt how to cook a few Ethiopian dishes.  It really sounded like a great day of culture exchange (and fingers crossed I can be involved in one in the future)!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

The Start of a Beautiful Friendship

By Rachel Slater
ENP Volunteer
Student at Midreshet Moriah

My second week at ENP was exciting! The class room was very lively.

The girls and boys were more talkative than last week. After Hadas and Racheli finished their delicious sandwiches, they started their math homework. This week the math consisted of addition and subtraction with multiple numbers. After I showed them some quick trick to make the problems simpler, the girls were able to complete the worksheets without barely any help. It's great to see Hadas and Racheli solve the problems by their selves because they get so excited and they recognize that they can do it on their own.

Not only did we do math, but we continued to get to know each other. I can't wait to further build our friendship. 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Apprehension and Excitement: Ready to Begin My Volunteering!

By Gabriella Feingold
ENP Volunteer


This week began with a lot of apprehension. I was to go to the schools I am volunteering at this year and talk about what I'll be doing. I had no idea what to expect! And everyone kept speaking in Hebrew! But then, I discovered the gratefulness of the staff and the willingness of the students. Just from two 10-minute meetings, the potential of my volunteer experience unfolded before my eyes. 

At Yeshivat Netivot Shalom, I met five boys with whom I will do extra English exercises to help strengthen their English studies. I expected teenage boys at the end of their school day to be disinterested, but they just listened attentively as I introduced myself and asked if I could start that day! (I couldn't, because I had no lesson plan prepared - but they certainly made me want to!) At Ulpanat Tzvia Yitziratit I met the Hebrew teacher, the principal, and the curriculum manager all of whom were thrilled that I am volunteering my time. When I said I could offer more hours a week than originally planned, they rushed into a frenzy finding all of the ways I can be useful to this school. And I hope that I will be. Next week I will start these exciting projects and I'm sure I'll have much more to report!

Monday, November 17, 2014

And I Thought Math Was Hard!

By Aleeza Hartstein
ENP Volunteer
Student at Midreshet Moriah

This past week I have the opportunity to volunteer at the Gymnasia School in Jerusalem with two Ethiopian boys in the seventh grade. At first they were a little hesitant to jump into their school work but after a few minutes they warmed up to me and we got to work. I volunteered to be put into the group that was teaching math thinking it would be basic algebra which I was fine with. The hard part wasn't converting 8/3 into a fraction, but deciphering the instructions which were in Hebrew and then trying to explain to the boys how to do the problem in Hebrew. After about an hour of slowly going through the worksheet (with much help from Google translate) we finally finished their school work and called it a day. It was a very fun yet challenging experience and I'm looking forward to working with the kids and getting to know them better throughout the year. 

First impressions

By Rachel Slater
ENP Volunteer
Student at Midreshet Moriah

This was my first week working with ENP! It was a great experience. The girls I spent the day with are named Racheli and Hadas. They are both very sweet and talkative. The girls had one worksheet of math, and they completed it with ease. After finishing the worksheet, we talked about our families and and got to know each other. I look forward to getting to know Racheli and Hadas better as the year goes on! 

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Welcome to ENP!

By Penina Gershbaum
ENP Volunteer
Student at Midreshet Moriah

This past Wednesday I volunteered in an Israeli public school to help teach English to Ethiopian children who need some additional English lessons. It was a really eye-opening experience working with these children. I had never worked with Ethiopian children before and I had never tutored anyone in English. There were 4 students who were scheduled for extra lessons, one who knew English pretty well and the other three were each on different levels. We were each given a student, and were given a worksheet with a few paragraphs and questions that the student had to complete. I thought I would just help the student with a few words she didn't understand or had trouble pronouncing, but I didn't realize how little she knew. We sat for an hour and a half working on the sheet, and we just finished reading a three paragraph passage. I helped her pronounce words she had trouble with, and translated many words into Hebrew so she would understand the meaning, and then would test her on the words. It was a little bit frustrating having to try to translate some words and repeat basic words that any 14 year old American would know, but it was rewarding at the end to know that I am making a difference in someone else's life. I am giving up 2 hours of my time a week, to help a student I don't even know, but these 2 hours of extra English are helping her and could change her life. Looking forward to what this week brings :)

Multi-faceted Challenges

By Talia Klein
ENP Volunteer
Student at Midreshet Moriah

This past Wednesday I began working with a handful of Ethiopian students at the Gymnasia School. Upon entering and being met by swarms of students, I was immediately excited because this was one of the first Israeli schools I had ever entered. I consulted briefly with the math teacher responsible for the children with whom I would be working and instantly found that I was really going to have to utilize my Hebrew, much more than I had expected when deciding to work with the Ethiopian National Project, which strives to integrate Ethiopian-Israelis into Israeli society. But this was the best news of the day as I was able to spend a few hours outside the confines of my midrasha (seminary program) at which I study to experience true Israeli culture and learning. 

This week I had the opportunity to work with two seventh grade girls who needed math assistance. We got to know each other a little and then delved right into their assignments, during which time all three of us were able to learn from one another in different respects. I learned and utilized new Hebrew terms and these girls learned and consulted with me regarding the math problems themselves. One of the most fulfilling moments, however, during our two hours together happened as follows: One of the students answered a math problem with what she had thought was the correct answer. I looked over her work to see if she used the proper methods to arrive at her answer, but I discovered that her answer was incorrect. Without hesitation, I was able to elaborate and describe in Hebrew why the correct answer was the correct answer, following which I saw her nod her head in approval and understanding. For her, it was the completion of one of the many math problems she was assigned. But for me, it was an incredible moment of joy that I was able to properly and efficiently communicate and teach in a foreign language. This undertaking already feels so rewarding due to the fact that not only am I teaching these students, but that truly they are teaching me as well. I look forward to continuing to build relationships with my students and to mapping their progress and mine. 

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Introducing...Mona!

By Mona Mizikovsky
ENP Intern, MASA Teaching Fellow in Rishon L'Zion





Hi! My name is Mona and I am a university graduate from Brisbane, Australia.  I recently moved to Israel for 10 months as an Israel Teaching Fellow living in Rishon LeZion.  I will be volunteering with ENP for the next 8 months in the International Relations Team.

While I have only had 1.5 days in the office I feel like I have already learnt so much about ENP and the incredible work that it does. Learning that the matriculation rate among ENP participants has nearly reached the national Jewish average and the superior performance of ENP participants in contrast to comparison group of similar background really proved to me that ENP is doing such important work.

My job over the next 8 months will be to assist with fund-raising, marketing and social media and I can tell you already, there is a lot of work to be done even to get the smallest amount of money for ENP. However, after hearing about the difference ENP is making in the Ethiopian Community in Israel, I know my time and effort is all worth it!  

Have a great day!