Yeddidim,Israel's foremost Mentorinf and Leadership Organization
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The Institute of Leadership
& Volunteerism
  Sector of Funding


  "Developing an identity, that is, a secure and confident sense of oneself and one’s place in society, is essential for the well-being of all young people. For young immigrants, identity development can be a particularly challenging task, as they try to make sense of the conflicting values and demands of their culture of origin and the society in which they have settled. Without support from adults and the wider community to help them find their way, some young immigrants risk developing negative identities and turning to unhealthy or antisocial outlets for their confusion or frustration. Organizations such as Yedidim, which provide guidance to immigrant youth in the identity formation process, both help the young people themselves and, in the long term, make a valuable contribution to the future of the society in which these young people will live as adults. "


Award for Excellence in Management
Jean Phinney ,

California State University

“This is my 3rd year volunteering as a mentor for Yedidim...if I had a dollar for every smile she put on my face I would be rich! I already feel like what I learned and the skills I have developed through this experience have enriched my life just as much as it helped her...sometimes I’m not sure who gets more out this...! "

Nathalie, Age 26
Volunteer mentor, Jerusalem


“I am extremely proud of my involvement with Yedidim.  I accepted to serve as the President of the National Board of the American Friends of Yedidim without hesitation as  I hope to be able to give of myself to a cause that I feel is of utmost importance for the country”


Award for Excellence in Management

Mike Burstyn ,
American Friends of Yedidim

The Challenge of Reintegrating into Israeli Society: the story of one family

"Los Angeles is a city of dreams, of lights, of stars, and of unlimited potential.  Yet, the challenge of raising committed Jewish children in that environment is difficult, to say the least.  Moreover, once you have lived a significant amount of time in Israel, it is very difficult to relinquish the Zionist dream.  And so it was, that after 3 years in LA, we decided to pack up our bags and return to Jerusalem. 

The kids were elated.  Although they had to leave behind their beloved Stephen S. Wise Temple Elementary School, they couldn't wait to shed their uniforms and join their old friends back home.  As parents, we did our best to check out the educational options, finally deciding to send them to the local junior high school.  

However, there were two major factors that we hadn't considered: 1) The educational system had had its budget slashed 11 times since we had left the country, leaving it bereft of qualified teachers, supplemental programs, and sufficient funding; and 2) Our sweet, diligent, prep school kids would no longer understand the language or the culture. 

Were we ever in for a big surprise.  The first day of school, the kids returned home and asked whether they were Ashkenazi or Sephardic – it seems that there are strong rivalries between the two groups in the school.  A few days later, my son who is quite big for his age, was attacked by a group of tough kids who wanted to prove they could take him on. Our daughter sat in class the first month in total shock, not comprehending what the teachers wanted from her.  While we had turned to the principal and asked if there was any assistance the school could give to help the children overcome the language barrier and to integrate better, we were told that there was no funding for such activities. Moreover, they said, everyone who comes to Israel is a new immigrant and the best thing is just to throw them in the deep end.   

Our experience with the sink or swim methodology was catastrophic.  Our son, who had been a straight-A student at Milken Middle School, wasn't coping with his studies and came under increasing attack. Our daughter simply gave up.  That is when we decided to turn to Yedidim.  While our children are certainly not the typical Yedidim youth, they were becoming at risk.  They were in a new country, didn't understand the language, couldn't understand the nuances of the culture, were getting in trouble both inside and outside the classroom, and were simply overwhelmed. 

Rising to the challenge, Yedidim sent two remarkable mentors to work with the kids, Noa and Eitan.  The two of them provided positive role models for the kids, assisted them with their studies and guided them through the social labyrinth that is Israeli society.  Where we were unable to help the children, Noa and Eitan were able to hold their hands, walk them through their academic requirements, and give them the friendship they so badly needed.  Today, one year later, our son is once again a solid student and our daughter is making significant inroads.  We owe tremendous thanks to Yedidim for picking up our children and helping them get back on their feet. "


Award for Excellence in Management

Shai Waxman Abramson,


" There are people here who are thirsty to lead the next generation. We feel a sense of shlichut towards our work and encounter with the Jewish communities around the world. We want to give them what we have as Israelis and get what they could give . "

Award for Excellence in Management
Erez, Age 17,
Participant ,
Leadership group Beersheva

"We are thrilled to be partners in this enterprise because we feel that Yedidim is an organization that knows how to grow - in all respects and knows how to adapt itself to new and changing realities effectively and efficiently, Yedidim today is not at all in the place it was when we started working together in 1990!"
Award for Excellence in Management

Naomi Freund,
Director, Gruss Foundation, Israel

"My name is Jeff Posner and I live in NYC. I have been supporting the very important work that YEDIDIM does since 2006. I believe very strongly in their work to help disadvantaged Israeli boys and girls and have convinced many of my friends to support it. If you would like a more personal comment on YEDIDIM I would be pleased to meet with you. "

Jeff and Judy Posner

Jeff and Judy Posner



"David Nadel and Hanna Nadel of Thousand Oaks California were so moved by the work performed by your organization! Israel depends on supporters to survive these challenging times. We are also very impressed by the fact that American Friends of Yedidim have virtually no administrative costs, salaries or expenses so that ALL of the donated funds go directly to program services! "

David Nadel and Hanna Nadel
Treasurer, AFY,
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            American Friends of Yedidim
16133 Ventura Blvd Ste 955
Encino, CA 91436
(818) 986-4686
11 Beit Hadfus St, Givat Shaul, POB 34415
Jerusalem, Israel 95483
(972) 2 6429636

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