Israeli foreign aid
Israeli foreign aid ranks low among OECD nations, spending less than 0.1% of its GNI on development assistance, as opposed to the recommended 0.7%. The country also ranked 43rd in the 2016 World Giving Index. Individual international charitable donations are also very low, with only 0.1% of charitable donations being sent to foreign causes.
Israel has provided humanitarian assistance to developing countries in Asia, Africa, South America, Oceania, and Central Europe through the activities of Mashav, the Israeli Center for International Cooperation, created in 1958, with the goal to give developing countries the knowledge, tools, and expertise that Israel gained in its own development, and its ability to "make the desert flourish". This center trains course participants from approximately 140 countries on healthcare, as well as emergency and disaster medicine, and has participated in dozens of projects worldwide in fields economic fields such as agriculture, education, development, employment, and healthcare, as well as humanitarian fields such as disaster relief, reconstruction, and refugee absorption.
Israel's humanitarian efforts officially began in 1957, with the establishment of Mashav, the Israel's Agency for International Development Cooperation. There are additional Israeli humanitarian and emergency response groups that work with the Israel government, including IsraAid, a joint programme run by 14 Israeli organizations and North American Jewish groups, ZAKA, The Fast Israeli Rescue and Search Team (FIRST), Israeli Flying Aid (IFA), Save a Child's Heart (SACH) and Latet.
In the 1970s, Israel broadened its aid agenda by granting safe haven to refugees and foreign nationals in distress from around the world. Since the 1980s, Israel has also provided humanitarian aid to places affected by natural disasters and terrorist attacks. In 1995, the Israeli Foreign Ministry and Israel Defense Forces established a permanent humanitarian and emergency aid unit, which has carried out humanitarian operations worldwide. As well as providing humanitarian supplies, Israel has also sent rescue teams and medical personnel and set up field hospitals in disaster-stricken areas worldwide.
Between 1985 and 2015, Israel sent 24 delegations of IDF search and rescue unit, the Home Front Command, to 22 countries. In Haiti, immediately following the 2010 earthquake, Israel was the first country to set up a field hospital capable of performing surgical operations. Israel sent over 200 medical doctors and personnel to start treating injured Haitians at the scene. At the conclusion of its humanitarian mission 11 days later, the Israeli delegation had treated more than 1,110 patients, conducted 319 successful surgeries, delivered 16 births and rescued or assisted in the rescue of four individuals. Despite radiation concerns, Israel was one of the first countries to send a medical delegation to Japan following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami disaster. Israel dispatched a medical team to the tsunami-stricken city of Kurihara in 2011. A medical clinic run by an IDF team of some 50 members featured pediatric, surgical, maternity and gynecological, and otolaryngology wards, together with an optometry department, a laboratory, a pharmacy and an intensive care unit. After treating 200 patients in two weeks, the departing emergency team donated its equipment to the Japanese.
- World Giving Index (PDF) (Report). Charities Aid Foundation. October 2016. Retrieved 20 January 2017.
- Sanders, Edmund (8 June 2013). "Israel ranks low in international giving". Los Angeles Times.
- Pfeffer, Anshel (28 April 2015). "The Downsides of Israel's Missions of Mercy Abroad". Haaretz. Retrieved 22 November 2015.
And even when no Israelis are involved, few countries are as fast as Israel in mobilizing entire delegations to rush to the other side of the world. It has been proved time and again in recent years, after the earthquake in Haiti, the typhoon in the Philippines and the quake/tsunami/nuclear disaster in Japan. For a country of Israel's size and resources, without conveniently located aircraft carriers and overseas bases, it is quite an impressive achievement.
- The Israeli Government's Official Website, by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Archived 3 April 2014 at the Wayback Machine
- see Dayan Yoni, Le Mashav – Centre de Coopération International Israélien, 118 p., 2006, available in Irice center for international studies in Paris 1 University and soon in Internet
- "About MASHAV". Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Retrieved 20 January 2017.
- Haim Yacobi, Israel and Africa: A Genealogy of Moral Geography, Routledge, 2015 p.113.
- Ki-moon, Ban (1 December 2016). "Secretary-General's remarks at reception in honour of ZAKA International Rescue Unit [as prepared for delivery]". United Nations. Retrieved 20 January 2017.
- Ueriel Hellman,"Israeli aid effort helps Haitians – and Israel's image", Jewish Telegraphic Agency 19 January 2010
- "Israel's 'superwoman' takes flight to help others – ISRAEL21c". Israel21c.
- "Wolfson cardiac surgeons save lives of more Gazan children". The Jerusalem Post - JPost.com.
- "Earthquake in Haiti – Latet Organization deploys for immediate relief to victims". ReliefWeb.
- Israeli Humanitarian Relief Operations – Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs Archived 17 January 2010 at WebCite
- "When catastrophe strikes the IDF is there to help". Israel Today. 20 May 2015. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
- Benhorin, Yitzhak (18 January 2010). "Praise for Israeli mission in Haiti: 'Only ones operating'". Ynet. Retrieved 25 November 2015.
- "International Aid to Haiti: Who's Giving". Cbsnews.com. 14 January 2010. Retrieved 13 October 2013.
- Marcy Oster, Israeli delegation leaves Haiti Jewish Telegraphic Agency 27 January 2010.
- "Heart surgery for Haitian child". Israel21c. 27 January 2010. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
- "IDF team returns from Haiti". The canadian Jewish news. 4 February 2010. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
- "Israeli aid delegation leaves for Japan". Ynetnews. 26 March 2011. Retrieved 13 October 2013.
- Kinue Tokudome, 'Promise fulfilled Israelìs Medical Team in Japan,' The Jerusalem Post 18 April 2015.