Imagine Israel Podcast Episode #8: Investing in Israel’s Next Generation

Social entrepreneur and Israeli philanthropist, Avi Naor has dedicated his philanthropic work to the survival and sustainment of Israel. Naor’s work focuses on two initiatives impacting Israel’s youth today: road safety and education.

Israel’s War on Road Safety

Or Yarok Association for Safer Driving

More people have died on the road than in the Arab-Israeli conflict – on both sides – since 1920. In 1997, Avi Naor founded the Or Yarok Association for Safer Driving in Israel following the tragic death of his son Ran in a road accident. Today, Or Yarok is a leader in Israel’s public agenda on road safety, and Israel’s road safety ranks among the ten safest countries in the world. The organization has helped raise public awareness of traffic accidents and influence the government agenda to shift the driving culture in Israel and substantially reduce the number of traffic accident casualties. Or Yarok also supports research in this field through the Ran Naor Foundation, as well as supporting relevant projects in academic institutions.

Bringing Israel’s Geographic and Economic Periphery into Focus

Shahaf Foundation

Only 20% of the Israeli population live in the bustling cities of Tel Aviv, Jerusalem or Haifa, and their immediate surroundings. The other 80% of Israeli citizens live on the margin of Israel’s map referred to as the geographic periphery. The social, economic and educational gaps between the country’s developed core and the neglected periphery are astounding and continue to decline. As part of Avi Naor’s  philanthropic efforts to help at-risk children and youth, Naor established the Shahaf Foundation in 2010. Shahaf builds social, mission-driven communities, transforming underdeveloped towns and cities on Israel’s periphery from places of deprivation and irrelevance to places of culture, opportunity and prosperity. In doing so, Naor is expanding educational opportunities for disadvantaged youth, rebranding the periphery as an innovative, vibrant and desirable place to live.

Federation’s United Jewish Endowment Fund has been a partner of the Shahaf Foundation for three years, supporting its work and the work of many others in mission-driven communities. Federation’s UJEF is also proud to work with other philanthropists and organizations to support this important work.

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