SEA’s community organizing program promotes initiatives and activism at community and municipal level, based on the values of social justice.
“Economic Students Forum”, which has been active since 2007 in Haifa University under the oversight of the SEA, has joined an international network of economics students campaigning for pluralism within economics.
Article by Rami Hod, Sea’s Executive Director
Social activist with a rich background in social and digital media, part of an urban community in Jerusalem
“From the moment the the first SEA course opened in 2004, I knew the organization would be able to address a deep-seated need in Israeli society. This is the need for a substantial and critical debate regarding the way we as a society manage ourselves and the tools we require to change our social reality. The SEA allowed many people, myself included, to learn and develop as social activists, and shed light on knowledge usually kept in dark corners. The tools I received from the SEA are still with me today in every project I embark on.”
Chairman of the Pedagogical Committee in the Center for Local Government’s Education Department
“After leaving my position as manager of city of Givatayim Education Department, I worked as an educational consultant for an organisation called Academia whose goal is to assist youths from the periphery to reach higher-education and took an SEA course on inequality in education. The course had a profound influence on me, and gave me, after years of working in the field, a new perspective on social justice and equality in education.”
Senior macro-economics analyst at Bank Leumi’s research division
“As a social activist I felt that despite my faith in social justice and workers rights, activists like myself were still in dire need of knowledge pertaining to rights and their actualization, as well as the manner we can truly aid other organization attempts. Thus, at the beginning of 2014, I put together a course on worker organizations for SEA activists and course participants. The lecturers were top-notch and the interaction with people who had already registered significant gains in this field were inspiring and motivating. After the course, I became active in the field and through the tools I received I began aiding group attempting to fulfil their rights.“
radio broadcaster on social issues at the Voice of the Upper Galilee radio station, coordinator of Mahapach-Taghir – a grassroots, Jewish-Arab organization for social change
“The SEA represents for me an alternative route to social and economic development in Israel. An alternative front which blends academic thought and field work. I feel that I received many skills from the SEA’s courses in which I participated.”
leader of the Eir vaEm (City and Mother) – Mother’s for Elad movement – the first female party to ever participate in the local elections of a ultra-Orthodox city. A prominent political and social activist in Haredi society. A hi-tech worker and mother of three.
“During the last municipal elections (2013) I established a political ticket comprised only of ultra-Orthodox women from the city of Elad. For the first time in Israel, women vied for a seat on a city council of an ultra-Orthodox community, on the basis of promoting women’s political involvement and social justice.
“After participating in an SEA course, a few women talk about how to continue to work together, and be decided begin a learning process focusing on social issues at the municipal level in an attempt to lead a change in our city. We soon opened a course and workshop program with the SEA, in which men and women from different parts of the city can come and learn.
“The learning experience and the interaction with experienced public activist and community organizers helped us consolidate our group identity, decide what issues we hope to tackle and find inspiration in numerous successes stories.”
Strategic consultant with a specialization in NGOs, former Chairman of Tel Aviv University Student Union.
“In the past I helped organize a group of janitors at Tel Aviv University and I was one of the founders of an entrepreneur center at Tel Aviv University; during the tent protests (of 2011) I was responsible for liaising between the Rothschild protest encampment (where the protest leaders were situated) and the National Student Union; I also led the consumers boycott of Shufersal and Tnuva.
“The SEA is one of the most important and inspiring social initiatives in Israel. It connects between knowledge and action, academia and field work. The extent to which the SEA developed my skills and critical-practical thinking is unmatched and I owe SEA much of my success.”
Head of the Community Engagement Department at the Haifa Municipality
“The profession of social work is a statement regarding a desire to improve the quality of life of our clients. Following of the courses and training programs I took at the SEA, I understood that without a deep understanding of the organizational and structural relationships in Israeli society, as well as in implementing changes in policy, the role of the social worker will always be lacking.”
Head of the Carmel co-op
“I participated in the SEA’s Co-operative training Program. In my opinion the SEA is a true source for a social change. The content of the SEA teaches is offered in only a few other places in such an organized and structured way. The SEA led to a real shift in consciousness, from passivity to activity.”
a veteran social activist, active in a number prominent organizations, working with social and community workers.
“Over the years I have always had the feeling something was off, a feeling I did not how to articulate into words. I saw the hardships of Israeli reality, in which people work but remain poor and unacceptable inequality is rampant. I was searching for answers on how to change this situation and when the SEA was established I enrolled in its first course.
“The SEA was the missing piece in my puzzle – it connected between my feelings and the data, showing me that the social reality in Israel is not the result of a force of nature, but of policy – policy which can be changed.
“The combination of the knowledge I gained, the people I met and the skills I developed at the SEA led to to where I am today.”
Founder of Israel’s first co-operative bank
“I joined the SEA in 2011 through a fellows training course and today I lecture on co-op activity and economy before numerous groups. The SEA has played a pivotal role in expanding the public’s knowledge on social and economic issues and also in changing the face of Israeli society as I see it. The fellow’s program is an amazing way for people like myself to expose divers groups and communities to new and more nuanced understanding of society and economy”. “
Lecturer at Tel Aviv University
“I began studying at the SEA when it was first established (in 2004). One of the most extraordinary things the SEA does is bring together a diverse group of people – from different ages and backgrounds – whose common denominator is a real desire to know and understand, and on the basis of this understanding and knowledge, lead social change.”
Lawyer and economist, Haifa city council member and founder of the SEA’s northern division.
“During my BA studies I received a National Lottery scholarship for excellence in military service, and that’s how I first met the SEA. As a young student with a newly discovered interest in social change, SEA gave me requisite tools to understand social reality and to change it. During the 2011 social protests, I organized the forum of the northern protest encampments, and during the 2013 municipal elections I ran for Haifa city council and was in charge of community organizing for “Living in Haifa” movement. Over the years, I have always stayed part of the SEA, coordinating courses and training workshops, because I understand that only daily connect between studying and doing can lead to a change at both the national and local level.”
News & Updates
(Hebrew) With support of the Social Economic Academy, economic students are working to change the curriculum of economics studies in the hopes of creating a new generation of socially minded economists. Originally Published on Ynet, 2.9.2014
“We must create new courses which will promote critical economic thought for the benefits of students and Israeli society.” Yuval Ofer-Shany, holds an MA in economics and one of the founders of the Economics Students Forum at Haifa University, aided by SEA
What happens when four social activists are also high-techists? Graduates of Sea’s Co-operatives program founded the first programing cooperative in Israel
Precarious employment via employment agencies has reached the Israeli middle class. A
collection of essays published by the Social Economic Academy offer cures for the malady.
Originally published in Haaretz, 12.8.2013
Originally published on Ynet, 04.11.13