Program Update: The Israel Association of Community Centers
August marked the end of a remarkably successful training period in women’s health for ultra-orthodox women in the Har Nof neighborhood of Jerusalem. Through the Israel Association of Community Centers, the Women’s Health Collaborative (WHC) supported a group of 25 women dedicated to addressing challenges to their own health and to the unique health challenges facing women in their community.
The women met a total of fifteen times, for sessions of lasting nearly four hours each, to learn about women’s health, leadership and empowerment.
Graduates of the program are enthusiastic about furthering their cause and will be engaged in the coming months in a series of new programs which they will lead locally. These include utilizing new and important venues to relay critical information to orthodox women about their bodies and health, including at local “Mikvehs” (ritual bathhouses), and local orthodox newspapers. The women are also in the process of creating of an official information center and a support hotline to benefit women with limited access to information regarding their bodies, health, or issues relating to domestic violence–information which is limited in traditional ultra-orthodox communities.
As one of the WHC representatives stated, “These women are extremely dedicated to the idea of making a change and are fully devoted to it.”