Decent Work and Economic Growth
JDC-Tevet, Providing Everyone with Employment Opportunities
Since the 1990s the Israeli Government has sought to move its vulnerable populations away from welfare benefits and towards active labor. Indeed, research does suggest the most effective systems combine financial support with programs that integrate people into the workforce. JDC-Tevet, a subsidiary and partner of JDC, is a leader in developing employment services with a focus on at-risk or minority populations. Their approach is statistical at heart but humane in nature.
The largest portioned budget is aimed at the Ultra-Orthodox sector who represent 28% of participation. Their current employment rate is at about 50% for men and just over 70% for woman. Research shows that most Israeli employers are reluctant to hire ultra-Orthodox workers and large wage disparities exist with hourly wage differences of 13.5%. Yet with the likes of JDC-Tevet, new policy and provisions for Ultra-Orthodox-friendly workplaces, barriers have started to decrease.
The Chen program works in partnership with the mainstream Ultra-Orthodox girls’ school system to provide a range of educational tracks including, computer science and graphic design. Available in 40 seminaries, 70 guidance counselors have been trained and some 6,000 women have participated in the program.
Hanoch, a vocational training supplement to Torah study is for Ultra-Orthodox men between the ages of 17-25. The participants undergo predatory learning of English, mathematics and Hebrew literacy and take part in various workshops to identify their professional interests and map out their future employment. So far, 3,200 students from 22 yeshivas took place in the programmes and some 75 Rabbis within yeshivot underwent training and awareness of employment for their students. These programmes provide workshops and mentors that guide participants in job applications, interviews and general on-going support.
JDC-Tevet’s work in the Ultra-Orthodox sector is helping Israel move towards the UN’s SDG 8 of increasing economic productivity by providing people with skills and jobs in a way that is fair and comfortable for all members of society.
Diagnosed with fibromyalgia at the age of 45, Shani, a single mother went in search of a new job with reduced work load and pressure. A year later she was still looking. Shani joined the JDC-Tevet program ‘Ramp-up’ where over the 10 workshop sessions covered issues such as how to manage one’s illness, how and when to disclose to employers, general employment law that would affect her and more. Shani found a new job soon enough which caters to her illness as well and when things are tough she calls Adi, her mentor, for a chat and guidance.
This just one of many programmes that JDC-Tevet provide for the community of people who encounter disabilities. Focus, employs and trains people with learning disabilities and ADHD providing capital and core skills. Incorporate Israel, works closely with Israeli businesses to help Israelis with disabilities join the corporate world by tackling stigmas and raising awareness. These programmes aim to raise the 57% employment rate for people with disabilities, contributing to the UN’s goal for providing employment for people with disabilities.
With dozens more programs, JDC-Tevet target young adults who often suffer from social or family problems or drug and alcohol issues. Their successful programs have extended to at-risk youth and specialized for ex-offenders in prison. Furthermore their contribution to the Ethiopian-Israeli community includes career and skills development. With years of experience, JDC-Tevet is changing the fabric of society with most of their programming being taken over by Government. They touch on the vast majority of the UN’s goal 8 objectives and continue to research and aid all communities in need regardless of age, gender, sex, religion or background.
Decent Work and Economic Growth Economic development is good for a community, but not when it ignores the needs of the people. Communities consist of