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2009 Top-Rated Nonprofit

International Sephardic Education Foundation

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: International, International Academic Exchange

Mission: EDUCATION

Results: More than 6,000 alumni who have escaped the vicious cycle of poverty and are making positive contributions to Israel’s society and economy

Target demographics: Bright Israelis from immigrant and underserved communities. ISEF targets both college-age beneficiaries through its scholarship and support programs, and schoolchildren through its education projects in the community.

Direct beneficiaries per year: 368 scholarship students

Geographic areas served: Israel

Programs: scholarship aid, "safety net" programs (academic assistance, emergency funds, counseling), social networking with fellow ISEF scholars, and leadership skills training

Community Stories

33 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

eyaakobi

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was an ISEF scholar for 6 years and for me, ISEF is more than just a scholarship. It is a family. You know that if you have a problem, they will help. This includes academic and personal problems as well as financial. In the U.S., ISEF's support was even more important. Firstly, because studies and life there are so much more expensive and secondly because, being Israeli, it was hard for me to be away from friends and family.

eyaakobi

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was an ISEF scholar for 6 years and for me, ISEF is more than just a scholarship. It is a family. You know that if you have a problem, they will help. This includes academic and personal problems as well as financial. In the U.S., ISEF's support was even more important. Firstly, because studies and life there are so much more expensive and secondly because, being Israeli, it was hard for me to be away from friends and family.

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

My name is Eitan Yaakobi and I have been supported by ISEF for more than 5 years. On top of the financial support which helped me a lot during my studies, ISEF serves as a family for me. The tremendous help I received from ISEF for any tiny problem I had encountered with is hard to describe with just words. On top of everything, I always knew that ISEF believes in me and supports me to achieve my goals and dreams!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My Name is Menny and I have been supported by ISEF for 6 years in which I conducted my graduate and postdoctoral studies in pure mathematics.

I do not know any mathematician in Israel coming from Sephardic background. During my studies, something without noticing it, this fact made me feel that "you don't belong here", " this is not for you", "success in academia is for others".

ISEF support was a vote of confidence in me, in my way, in my deserved place in the academic world. It is like saying “keep going! You have the same rights and possibilities as your colleagues!”.

The gift ISEF gave me is a one that goes into my heart, my self-esteem and pride. But it manifests itself also in many day to day things… For example, we have enough money to give my 8 years old daughter, Alma, harp lessons! Art lessons for my 5 year’s old son, Amitai, and also for the well-being of my wife Dahlia, and our 3 years old Amalia. ISEF scholarship is exactly what bridges the gap between being stress about making hand meet, to feeling that we have enough money to anything that we would like do.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My dream is to become a scholar that can contribute to society in general and Israeli society in particular. ISEF has been helping me to achieve this goal. I would not have been able to pursue doctoral studies at Brandeis University without ISEF’s support. ISEF’s mission to enhance Israel’s well-being is a blessed and important one. It is a mission that I share whole-heartedly.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Hello, my name is Eytan Damari. I can only try to express my appreciation towards ISEF foundation by words, but I think what and who I am today, will express it far better. I 28 years old, six years ago I started my medical studies, which without the support of ISEF, I wouldn't be able to start nor will I be able to finish them. These day, I am proud to say I have finish my studies and I am now a medical doctor - only due to the support of ISEF along the year. ISEF is more than a simple organization, the people working in ISEF are truly helpful and understand that the whole is composed of individual persons, and so they act and treat accordingly. From all this huge organization, I have been treated like I am the only person there, always checking on you, supporting in ways beyond required. My degree I owe to ISEF.

Previous Stories
3

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am a 5th year student, studying abroad in Hungary. From my own experience with ISEF, ISEF is one of the most supporting non-profit organizations i came upon with. They have been there by my side in every aspect, willing to help in times of need keeping thier door always open for others. THANK YOU ISEF FOR EVERYTHING!

Client Served

Rating: 5

Dear all, my name is Liran Odeni. I am 30 yrs old and a 5th year medical student at Semmelweis University in Budapest. Ever since I can remember, I knew I wanted to become a doctor but unfortunately in Israel, the available places at the university are extremely limited to a few students every year. In order to study abroad, each year I had to pay a very high price that my parents couldnt afford themselves. ISEF has been supporting me economically and emotionally all the way from the beginning. Through ISEF, a guy with a very low socioeconomic background will graduate next year who plans to contribute to our society by giving proper and equal medical care to all. Without ISEF, I could not do this and I want to say THANK you all for your contribution and support. Liran Odeni

Previous Stories
16

Client Served

Rating: 5

Hi my name is Liran Odeni a 28 years old from israel. Through ISEF I was able to realize my dream. Without ISEF’s support I would not be where I am today; a 3rd year medical student. Who could believe that someone with a lower socioeconomic background would be able to go to Medical School? To show my gratitude to ISEF, once I complete my studies and establish myself as a doctor I intend to help others achieve their dreams as well.

Client Served

Rating: 5

One of the burning issues in modern Israeli society is the inequality between those that come from strong socioeconomic backgrounds and those that do not. The one indisputable way of closing gaps within a society is to advance and enable equal opportunity for education for young men and women. This is the International Sepharadic Education Foundation's (ISEF) main goal. Furthermore, ISEF is unique in that it enhances equal opportunity throughout all educational levels, from school to post-doctoral training.

Education is the key to Israel's future and supporting ISEF is supporting the age old vision of an enlightened and just modern Israeli society, a beacon onto the nations. ISEF has played a key role for myself and many others in being able to dedicate oneself to learning and research despite the heavy financial burden of paying for tuition and living expenses on one's own.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My name is Tamir Arviv. For me, ISEF is a place of belonging and empowerment. ISEF has supported me for the past 10 years. From my first steps through the gate of Tel Aviv University to my current PhD studies in the University of Toronto.
I am the first in my family to attend University and I can’t imagine going through my studies without the warm support that I have been receiving from ISEF.

Previous Stories
3

Client Served

Rating: 5

My name is Tamir Arviv. For me, ISEF is more than just any other scholarship program – It’s a family – a place of belonging and empowerment. ISEF has supported me for the past 8 years. From my first steps through the gate of Tel Aviv University to my current PhD studies in the University of Toronto. I am the first in my family to attend University and I can’t imagine going through my studies without the warm support that I have been receiving from ISEF.

Client Served

Rating: 5

my name is Hilla Zafrani Werner and i am a medical student in the "La Sapienza" university in Rome, Italy. i am supported by this rare and amazing organization: INTERNATIONAL SEPHARDIC EDUCATION FOUNDATION" and i say rare because this organization taought me how to trust and feel trusted…they taught me what is real generosity…what it truly means to be generous…but generous not only with your money, but also with your time, with your knowledge, with your strength… I learned how this chain (of people) of giving works and what are the amazingly very simple ways to keep it together… to keep it from breaking.. how to make this magical cycle of giving and receiving feed itself in a way that it will never run out of fuel…
other than supporting me in my studies financialy, and helping me feel worthy and believing in me.. which made all the difference.. they have been and are like a family to me.. after all.. isnt everything i wrote above describes what a family is....thank you ISEF!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

My name is Moshe Elkabets and I am a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard Medical School supported by the INTERNATIONAL SEPHARDIC EDUCATION FOUNDATION-ISEF. My interest in the study of drug discovery and targeted therapy for breast cancer. My long term-goal is to receive the best training possible in order to establish my own laboratory and become a successful and independent researcher in the area of cancer research back in Israel.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My name is Refael, I am a post-doctoral researcher supported by ISEF. ISEF's support is not only in the financial level, but mainly in building the professional network that is so important in the industry and academy. As an ISEF fellow my social commitment had strengthened and I hope to be more involved in the community after finishing my postdoc and returning to Israel

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Hallo, my name is Batel, a veterinary student in Italy and i am a part of the amazing family that is ISEF...family that gave me and so many other the golden opportunity to learn, to grow and to gain tools to make this world better. ISEF gave me hope and showed me how important it is to help and support one another...i can not express in words how great full i am to ISEF.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

ISEF is my lifeguard, it is the family that adopted me six years ago and made my dream of becoming a doctor possible. In the ISEF meetings I attended along the years I was truly inspired by the people and the whole organization. I was exposed to the general ideas and goals, and I took upon myself to contribute in achieving them.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

My name is Eitan Yaakobi and I'm an ISEF PhD student in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UCSD. ISEF has been a family for me for the last three and a half years. Besides the financial support I'm getting that helps me to complete my degree, I have a supporting family that helps and supports me in any aspect of my life. I would never be able to achieve and do my PhD without ISEF's support!

7

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Isef is the most warm and helping home I ever had, these lines will never be enough to describe the way Isef take care and advance its students. For me it was a special place because there were always amazing people who were really interested in our opinions, suggestions, needs, and give us the sense that we are important. As a PHD student I've got fellowships from other organizations, but non of these organization really created in me this sense of identification and understanding of how this organization's targets are important as Isef. The yearly meeting were always very exciting and Isef head and staff always managed to make us feel excited about the organization and the urge to success.

8

Client Served

Rating: 5

ISEF's are my "future saviours"... its not only a foundatin.. its a family... a warm caring helpful stron family... when i was about to quit med school.. they are the ones who came to the rescue!! and they are doing it with all the love i could ever ask for... they are more than just financial support.. i constantly get moral and emotional support... the achievements by its students are amazing!!! and their work deffinatly shows!!!

9

Client Served

Rating: 5

ISEF's amazing work covers a wide range of students, women and men, from different communities in Israel, and a variety of fields of study. The support I receive as a PhD student in education, at the University Wisconsin-Madison, has greatly enabled my ability to pursue my studies. ISEF provides not only financial support, but also a warm community, and a network of support.

10

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My name is Michal Ram I am a medical student at "La Sapienza" university of Rome and an ISEF candidate for the past 3 years. ISEF for me is a family. They have helped me SO much throughout these years to pursue my dream of being a Medical Doctor. ISEF has taught me the meaning of giving by doing so. I KNOW that when I finish university I have not only earned my degree but also the willing and capacity to help people in difficulty to pursue their dream just like ISEF did for me when I was in need. I am proud to be part of this foundation wishing us all the best, THANK YOU ISEF !

8

Volunteer

Rating: 5

my name is moriah amnony, i am a medicine student at Rome LA SAPIENZA university.I am glad to have the opportunity to thank the ISEF community personally for thier generosity. Without scholarship patrons like you, there would be many students such as myself unable to pursue the career they've dreamed of. I hope to become an individual that makes your institution proud, epitomizing all of the values your organization stands for and by which it has created its highly-regarded reputation.

8

Client Served

Rating: 5

ISEF has been a second family to me for the past 15 years. ISEF has supported me since my BSc through my posdoctoral training at UCSD. This is a very unique fund that promotes the individulas to reach the maximum of their abilities, as well as implementing the idea that we can also help other to succeed!

5

Client Served

Rating: 5

My name is Shay and I am a doctorate candidate at Harvard Law School. ISEF assists me to complete my studies and return to my home country as a scholar. In addition, being part of the ISEF community, I am able to avail myself of the valuable opportunity to meet other graduate students with similar backgrounds, career goals and research areas.