ELEM – YOUTH IN DISTRESS IN ISRAEL
WHO WE ARE
ELEM was founded in 1981 by a group of volunteers from Israel and the United States in order to help youth-at-risk become productive citizens, contributing to the society and the nation.
Over the years ELEM expanded its programs for youth at risk, advancing the following activities:
• Developing as a national organization engaged in providing a wide range of services and programs for adolescents, especially in the fields of counseling, outreach and prevention.
• Fortifying its volunteer activities and establishing itself as an organization that not only acts on the behalf of youth, but also incorporates an actively involved youth force.
• Advancing innovative programs and initiatives in the field of treating and assisting youth at risk, along with fostering a deep commitment to help and treat teens in states of alienation, risk and severe and ongoing neglect.
• Developing bodies of knowledge, innovative methods and intervention approaches and activities to bring about a perceptual and theoretical change in the youth service system in Israel.
• Expanding the organization based on the infrastructure afforded by dozens of active branches throughout Israel, which serve as community support frameworks for operating youth programs.
WHAT WE BELIEVE IN
We believe that caring for children at risk is the responsibility of the entire society. The State of Israel, as a democratic welfare state, must guarantee the basic rights of each and every child in Israel, as prescribed in the international conventions to which it is signatory.
As a volunteer and professional organization our goal is to ensure the continuation of the collective responsibility through enlightened social policy, along with enlisting the assistance of the public-at-large, receiving support from the business sector and promoting volunteer involvement that embodies caring, empathy and true partnership.
As a social-civil organization we draw our strength and status from:
• Independence in our public and professional activities.
• Financial independence and flexibility.
• Activity based on broad volunteer involvement.
• Pro-active behavior and a commitment to social themes relevant to the entire society.
WHO WE ARE HELPING
ELEM assists adolescents dealing with different types of crises: pressures, trauma, risk and distress. Adolescence is a period rife with problems. These problems are exacerbated by the economic, social and security difficulties in Israel and where relevant, by the immigration process. This complex environment makes some of the youngsters all the more vulnerable to a variety of risk situations. We believe that a majority of the youth is in need of an attentive ear, support, guidance and counseling, whether it be about bothersome mundane problems or severe cases of alienation and neglect.
THE SCOPE OF OUR ACTIVITIES
Our activities are conducted throughout Israel, in dozens of cities, towns and villages. More than 1,800 volunteers (youth and adults) are active in ELEM in the field and in the administration force in its institutions and professional and public forums.
ELEM also employs a multidisciplinary staff of professionals in field tasks, planning, development and training. During the year 2002 more than 60,000 adolescents received help and contact was maintained with some 12,000 youngsters in assorted states of risk, detachment and hardship.
Please visit ELEM-USA website for more information about ELEM