RHIF has joined #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving that harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities, and organizations to encourage philanthropy and to celebrate generosity worldwide. Occurring this year on November 29, #GivingTuesday is held annually on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving (in the U.S.) and the widely recognized shopping events Black Friday and Cyber Monday to kick-off the holiday giving season and inspire people to give back in impactful ways to the charities and causes they support.
RHIF has joined #GivingTuesday to bring attention to its Illui Student Loans and Scholarships project, which provides Israeli students with scholarships and a viable option to finance their studies abroad in the form of collectively funded American and UK style student loans.
Years of budget cuts have severely damaged the quality of higher education in Israel. The teacher-student ratio at most of Israel’s major research institutions has more than doubled (from 12.6 students per professor to 26.1) and universities are no longer able to compete for the most qualified professors.
“The budget cuts to higher education cause more damage to Israel’s scientific endeavors and reputation as a ‘start-up nation’ than any BDS boycott can ever hope to achieve. For example, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel’s most renowned university, was forced to take out a huge loan and had to delay the opening of the school year by two weeks due to a cumulative deficit of about 1.3 billion shekels and a negative cash flow of hundreds of millions of shekels a year,” comments Gary Pickholz, Chairman of RHIF.
On Illui's waiting list, there are currently 50 Israeli students that have been accepted to study degrees in science, technology, engineering, or math at top ranking US universities. As part of its #GivingTuesday campaign, RHIF has pledged to fund the post-graduate degrees of as many wait-listed students as possible, offering the country’s bright young scientists the opportunity to learn from top flight professors.
“We have already funded the post-graduate degrees of seven Israeli students but we are hoping to raise the money to fund scholarships for the 50 students on our waiting list,” Pickholz continues. “RHIF wants to help students obtain the best possible education so that Israelis can compete in world academia and continue to be at the technological and medical forefront.”
Those who are interested in contributing to Robin Hood Israel Foundation’s #GivingTuesday initiative can make a donation here.
#GivingTuesday is a movement to celebrate and provide incentives to give—the 2016 iteration will be held on November 29, 2016. This effort harnesses the collective power of a unique blend of partners—nonprofits, businesses, and corporations as well as families and individuals—to transform how people think about, talk about and participate in the giving season. #GivingTuesday inspires people to take collaborative action to improve their local communities, give back in better, smarter ways to the charities and causes they celebrate and help create a better world. #GivingTuesday harnesses the power of social media to create a global movement dedicated to giving around the world.
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To learn more about #GivingTuesday participants and activities please visit:
 Taub Center (2013)