My first week at Shatil

I am interning this summer at an organization named Shatil (seedling in Hebrew). Shatil has three offices throughout Israel: Jerusalem, Haifa, and Be’er Sheva; I am working in the Jerusalem office. Shatil’s mission is to help develop Israeli civil society through support, mentorship, consultation and guidance of various non-profit organizations throughout Israel. In addition to supporting other non-profits, Shatil runs its own projects, such as organizing strikes for workers‘ rights, creating forums for Israeli- Arab co-existence and lobbying the government for socially conscious policy change. While Shatil functions as an umbrella organization for many other NGO’s, it is also under the umbrella of the New Israel Fund (NIF), a philanthropy organization that works to promote democracy and social justice in Israel. Shatil functions as the action arm of the NIF through creating, promoting, and helping to sustain civil society in Israel. In addition to the aforementioned roles, Shatil runs a database for people to find jobs with socially conscious organizations, and many Israelis know Shatil for this function. Shatil’s English webpage can be found here.

 

 

I am interning in the Development Department of Shatil, which works on fund-raising and publicity, and runs some of its own projects concerning the environment, shared society (Israeli-Arab coexistence), Bedouin womens rights, social protests and more. In my role as intern I am expected to write reports to donors, write articles for NIF’s e-newsletter, update the job database, translate documents from Hebrew to English, and work on a research project concerning Shatil’s status on ECOSOC (the UN Economic and Social Council). Additionally, I will attend Shatil events and conferences and meet a variety of activists in Israeli civil society.

Here is a link to the E-Newsletter article that I worked on.

I spent this past semester studying abroad in Morocco, and knew that I really wanted to be in Israel this summer. I looked at a variety of organizations and opportunities, but wasn’t really excited about any of them. Then, while talking to my sister who lives in Israel, she told me to look at Shatil. She knew of Shatil because of their work with social workers (which is what she is) and she knew about my interests in civil society, social justice and the non-profit world. I looked at the website and was really interested, so I sent an email with my resume and a cover letter to Shatil, secured a phone interview (conducted while sitting in a loud café with a terrible connection) and, thankfully, got the internship.

My first week at the internship was interesting. I did not have very much information about my specific day-to-day activities before I came, and was expecting to be sitting in the office a little less than I am. However, the people in the office are all very nice, friendly, and open to answering my millions of questions. They immediately got me set up with everything I need and put me to work right away. They also gave me a short briefing about what exactly Shatil is and does, its relationship with the NIF and other NGO’s, and introduced me to everyone in the office.

This summer I hope to learn about civil society in Israel, and working in the non-profit world. What I like about Shatil is that it is a big organization that is associated with a variety of other organizations.  Therefore, I will learn not only about different departments and functions within the organization, but also inter-organizational relationships as I am exposed to various organizations and projects.

Tamar Schneck ’13

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