WIZO (Women’s International Zionist Organisation) and AJEEC-NISPED (Arab-Jewish Center for Equality, Empowerment and Cooperation-Negev Institute for Strategies of Peace and Development) have partnered together to enhance telephone counselling services for Arab families in Israel. In 2006, WIZO started a hotline for parents of early-age children, who often need advice which is not always provided from within their communities. WIZOUK, a coalition member of the UK Task Force, is fundraising for the project.
Since 2013, WIZO has also been operating Arabic language hotlines in an effort to reach minority populations. To this end, AJEEC-NISPED and WIZO have formed a partnership to enhance the Arabic language service and to make the hotline more culturally-sensitive.
AJEEC-NISPED will assist in locating Arabic-speaking volunteers, promoting the Parent Hotline amongst Arab communities in Israel, and training volunteers. This training will be aided by WIZO’s expertise in the field of early-age education.
The hotline offers parents free guidance from social workers, psychologists and academics, who volunteer with a small payment to provide their expertise. They aim to support and counsel parents in a relevant and culturally-sensitive way, which instigated the need for more culturally-tailored training and an awareness of area-specific issues.
The service provides much needed advice to over 2,000 callers annually, and the majority of callers to the Arabic language service are Bedouin from southern Israel.