The UJA-Federation of New York will spend $1.5 million over three years on programs for young Israeli children and parents at risk.
The program is part of an initiative being launched this week to improve literacy and school readiness in Israel for children from birth to 3 years old.
It is geared to needy populations throughout Israel and includes Jews and non-Jews.
Participating organizations are Ashalim, the Karev Fund, the National Council of Jewish Women’s Research Institute for Innovation in Education and the Negev Institute for Strategies of Peace and Development’s Arab-Jewish Center for Equality, Empowerment and Cooperation .
â€œResearch has shown us that parent-child interactions in reading and playing are crucial to a childâ€™s progress in learning and readiness for school,” said Tina Price, the chair of UJA-Federationâ€™s Caring Commission. “In Israel there are often risk factors, such as immigration, poverty or large families, which can prevent small children from receiving opportunities to develop literacy and language skills. This can hurt their chances of success for years to come.â€