This year’s NIF Yaffa London-Yaari prizes have been awarded to three women’s organisations hit hard by the COVID-19 crisis. Every year, the New Israel Fund awards the Yaffa London-Yaari Prize to a group of extraordinary women who have established innovative projects working to advance women’s rights in Israel.
This year, the Yaari family broke with tradition and instead of giving smaller grants to early-stage organisations, they offered larger grants of $15,500 each to three more established organisations affected by the pandemic. The prizes were awarded at a ceremony in Beit Daniel in Tel Aviv.
The three award winners were: Lo Omdot Mi’Neged, which assists women seeking to survive prostitution; Women Against Guns, a project formed by a coalition of organisations to promote a change in government policy regarding gun ownership and crime reduction in Arab society; and Hillel’s program for women and single parents who have left ultra-Orthodox society.
In 2003, the Yaari Family established the fund in the name of their late mother, Yaffa London-Yaari, one of the founders and leaders of the social services system in the early days of the state. During her life, she embodied a culture of giving back to the community, social solidarity, and the advancement of women’s rights.
Over the years, the women who have won the Yaffa London-Yaari Prize have come from diverse backgrounds — Jews, Arabs and Bedouin, Ashkenazi and Mizrahi, veteran Israelis, new immigrants, secular, traditional, religious and ultra-Orthodox — all from the social and geographic periphery of Israel. The prize has allowed the winners to develop innovative projects for women.