Kidum – Families

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General Background

The population that lives below the poverty line is generally divided into three categories. The “upper” third is characterized by temporary poverty; those in this category are usually aware of their rights and the resources available to them, and by taking small steps manage to overcome the situation. The “lower” third is characterized by chronic poverty; their situation cannot be solved without heavy intervention, and they receive assistance from welfare agencies. In contrast to the first two populations, the middle third consists of those who, while earning low salaries and suffering a significant and ongoing gap between their income and expenses, nevertheless have the competency and motivation to change their situations.

Target Population

Kidum Mishpachot serves those who are identified as living in the middle tier of poverty. The program operates all over Israel and through agencies at all levels of government.

Vision and goals

To help families in the second tier of poverty, by creating sustainable changes in their economic and employment situations, and by empowering them as a family unit.

Kidum Mishpachot helps families escape poverty by making holistic changes:

  • Improving their economic situation and access to resources: decreasing the gap between their income and expenses, managing a family budget, building an economic recovery plan and assistance in accessing the rights and resources for which they are eligible.
  • Improving their employment situation: leveraging existing marketable skills, learning new skills that allow entry or return to the labor force, and learning soft skills needed for occupational stability.
  • Improving their relationships as a family: strengthening and empowering the family unit and encouraging “buy-in” from all members for the changes needed, improving communication between the parents and all family members, and shoring up parents’ authority so as to ensure cooperation and a sense of teamwork in pursuing the family’s goals.

 

Each family works with a trained guide who helps them work through all three areas of intervention. Each guide works with 20 families, meeting each one around every one or two weeks, depending on the family’s needs. The guide helps each family build a customized plan, tailored to their needs and dreams in each intervention area.

Participating families are also entitled to meet with consultants who have deeper expertise, such as a financial counselor, mortgage broker, couples therapist, family therapist and parenting experts.

So far, Kidum Mishpachot has helped more than 3,000 families:

  • 90% have settled their debts.
  • 66% of unemployed women and 63% of unemployed men have found jobs. Additionally, 55% of employed women and 41% of employed men increased their weekly work hours and salaries.
  • 62% of the families reduced the monthly gap between their income and expenses by more than 1,000 NIS.
  • 55% increased their income by at least 20%.

 

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