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Lifestyle/Community

Telfed academic programme gains momentum.

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MARGOT COHEN

SASI (SA Students Studying in Israel) has a selection of subjects from which prospective students may choose, for inter alia business, computer science and psychology degrees.

In the past, explains CEO of Telfed, Dorron Kline, “some of the main difficulties in being accepted to Israeli universities were the need to pass psychometric tests and undertake studies through medium of Hebrew.

“Today there are universities which provide courses of studies in English and evaluate students on the basis of their matric results. The students will have the benefit of obtaining higher education on an international level.”

At present there are more than 45 South Africans studying both as olim and as tourists and a further 20 new students are anticipated in the coming year.

The project plans to facilitate support such as Hebrew classes and accommodation.

Steve Handler, volunteer fundraising chairman for Telfed, explained that there are a number of different needs-based bursaries available that could collectively (depending on eligibility) cover up to 50 per cent of the university tuition costs in the first year, as well as a housing bursary covering accommodation costs.

One of the biggest pluses is the warm environment with a family-like support system, and guidance provided by Telfed to help acclimatise to Israel, as well as the assistance offered in securing employment post-graduation.

Situated in Ra’anana, Telfed started its operations in 1948. Over the past 67 years, the organisation has expanded its multifarious charitable activities serving the South African community in Israel. One of these activities is the provision of 104 apartments for olim to rent in Tel Aviv and Ra’anana at rates well below market levels. 

In addition, Telfed provides vital support to the elderly, families at risk, families with special needs, lone soldiers and single parents.

Besides the 200 olim who arrive from South Africa each year, Telfed also extends is absorption services to approximately 200 Australian olim a year and just last month, signed an agreement to train a Dutch klita counsellor in the absorption of some 50 immigrants yearly from Holland.

More than 250 volunteers are involved in regional community activities and many of the students who are on annual bursaries, are active in giving back to and assisting the local community.

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