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Mentoring in Israeli social businesses


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Posted on: 
29 May 2019
Mentoring in Israeli social businesses

It was a pristine spring day in Israel’s south as ICEJ AID staff hosted German and Swiss Christians who came to see how their giving is impacting those in need and to learn about everyday life in Israel directly from the people.

Our tour included a visit to Pinat HaOchel (“Kitchen Nook”), a popular sandwich shop on a side-street in one of Beersheva’s more disadvantaged areas. Our host was Chai, the young proprietor. He described himself as a former youth-at-risk who had the benefit of learning the trade at Café Ringelblum just up the street. It was exactly what he needed at the time – to be mentored on the job. Café Ringelblum was established as a social business to help youths-at-risk learn responsibility, employment expectations and other life skills.

A ‘social business’ focuses on two bottom lines. One is to make a profit to keep the business viable. The other is to benefit the community in some way.

Chai’s life was changed through the things he learned at the mentoring café, and today he passes forward the good he received by helping other youth. One day, Chai hopes to have a whole chain of restaurants, and perhaps one of the youths he trains today will become a partner tomorrow. One thing he knows for sure, he wants his sandwich stop to make his neighbourhood a better place.

 ICEJ AID is excited to sponsor mentoring programs for social businesses that are just starting out, when our support is needed most. These businesses not only provide employment in the periphery of the country, but they also strengthen and contribute to the communities where they live and work.

If you are in Beersheva, visit Pinat HaOchel and taste one of Chai’s delectable sandwiches for yourself. You will not only enjoy an affordable meal, but also have the satisfaction of knowing that, as a customer, you are helping one former youth-at-risk realise his dream while helping others begin to dream as well.

You also can help Israeli social businesses today thru ICEJ AID! Visit us at:


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