History

1997

Launching Israel Activities

The Merage family launches its philanthropic activity in Israel with the establishment of the “Queen Esther Foundation” for the absorption of  Iranian immigrants.

2004
Launching the “Wings” Program

Launching the “Wings” Program

Wings assists new immigrants who have made an “Aliyah” from the time they first arrive in Israel, through their military service and until several years after their release from the IDF.

2004

Establishing the “The Iranian Immigrants’ Women Club”

“The Iranian Immigrants’ Women Club” is established by women, for women. The social-volunteer space enables women to learn, create, network, grow, volunteer and collaborate with one another.

2005
Founding the Center for Iranian Studies at TAU

Founding the Center for Iranian Studies at TAU

Founding the Center for Iranian Studies at Tel Aviv University in collaboration with Lord Alliance. The unique research center focuses on Iran’s culture and history.

2006
Launching programs in the Negev

Launching programs in the Negev

2008
Renaming the Foundation

Renaming the Foundation

Queen Esther Foundation” is officially renamed the “Merage Foundation Israel”.

2008
Launching the “InDnegev” Festival

Launching the “InDnegev” Festival

Backed by the Merage Foundation, the annual InDnegev festival takes place every October and is one of the leading independent music festivals in Israel, featuring a wide range of musical genres and styles.

2009
Launching Early Childhood Activities

Launching Early Childhood Activities

Supporting Iranian immigrant children and their mothers through lectures and workshops in various topics such as sports, cooking, crafts, fine and gross motor skills, parenting and more.

2009
Establishing the “Wings Guidance Center”

Establishing the “Wings Guidance Center”

Providing lone immigrant soldiers with advice, therapy and support to help them re-enter Israeli society as confident and active citizens following their service.

2009
“Creating Dreams in the Negev”

“Creating Dreams in the Negev”

Over 150 young artists across the Negev are able to participate in a six-month professional workshop in the fields of music, dance and theater. Classes consist of enrichment sessions, professional lectures, rehearsals, performances and master classes with leading artists in their fields.

2009
Launching the “Yoga Arava” Festival

Launching the “Yoga Arava” Festival

Known as the the largest yoga gathering in the Middle East, the Yoga Arava festival includes more than 40 yoga workshops, held by the best teachers from Israel and around the world. Guests are able to stay in over 60 different guest houses ranging from lone farms, desert suites, and pampering guest houses.

2009
Opening the Merage Medical Center in Dimona

Opening the Merage Medical Center in Dimona

The second largest and most important medical center in the Negev, the Merage Medical Center covers three acres and includes an emergency clinic, a specialist clinic, and a dialysis facility.

2010
Launching the Annual Gala for Iranian Women in Israel

Launching the Annual Gala for Iranian Women in Israel

Since 2010, the Merage Foundation has been holding an annual event each March celebrating women in the community and their work. The prestigious event includes performances, dances, and is produced voluntarily by women in the community. Profits are then invested in new projects for the community.

2010

Providing Iranian Immigrant Children With “One Laptop per Child”

The Merage Foundation has been taking part in the “One Laptop per Child” initiative, working to guarantee that every household in Israel that can’t afford it will receive a brand new computer with WiFi as well as a training program. To this day, more than 70 families have already received a computer that they are able to enjoy for the first time in their lives.

2010
Launching the Negev Entrepreneurship Program

Launching the Negev Entrepreneurship Program

A unique course for entrepreneurs who want to start a business in the Negev, personally mentored by professionals and exposed to potential investors.

2011

Launching the “Tmoora” Program for Iranian immigrants

The program encourages young Iranian immigrants to join the IDF or volunteer for National Services and accompanies recruits throughout their service.

2011
Launching the Mitzpe Ramon Conference for Health Equality

Launching the Mitzpe Ramon Conference for Health Equality

The conference addresses health disparities in the Negev region, and raises public awareness, through a forum of policy leaders, health experts, representatives of health organizations and heads of local authorities in the Negev.

2011
Launching the Negev Jobs Website

Launching the Negev Jobs Website

The Negev Jobs website connects between thousands of employers and job seekers across the Negev region.

2012
Launching “Pirchey Refua”

Launching “Pirchey Refua”

The unique program for young members of the Iranian community, ages 12-14, aims to expose the teenagers to the world of medicine, rescue and health. The program spans an entire year and offers unparalleled knowledge and content from anatomy and cardiology to immunology and nutrition.

2012

Donating the Dr. Habib Levy Book Collection to TAU

One of the most significant figures of Iranian Jewry, and Laura Merage’s grandfather, Dr. Habib Levy’s incredible book collection is now available to the general public in Tel Aviv University, as part of the Alliance Center’s activities.

2013
Establishing the Zin Elementary School Library

Establishing the Zin Elementary School Library

The Zin Elementary School library in Midreshet Ben Gurion honors Katherine Merage.

2016
Establishing the Yeruham Bicycle Center

Establishing the Yeruham Bicycle Center

In addition to being a home to the local cycling club, the bicycle center is a popular visitors spot for tourists visiting Yeruham from around the world.

2016

Creating the “Lone Soldier Forum”

In 2016, Wings received the mandate to hold a “Lone Soldier Forum” from Knesset Member, Avraham Negosa. The first-of-its-kind, the forum brings together over 17 organizations including representatives from the Ministry of Welfare, the Ministry of Aliyah and Absorption, the Ministry of Defense and the IDF in order to best assist lone soldiers.

2016
Launching the Wings Alumni Program

Launching the Wings Alumni Program

Established in cooperation with the Ministry of Aliyah and Integration, the program addresses various aspects of building an Israeli identity, networking and integrating into Israeli society.

2017
Promoting Urban Renewal in the Negev

Promoting Urban Renewal in the Negev

The program provided several urban planning tools for local municipalities. In addition, an unprecedented delegation of mayors and city planners visited Germany on a four-day workshop to learn about the latest models in urban planning and city center revitalization.

2017

Launching the “Connected to Life” Program

The initiative supports and teaches senior citizens how to use smartphones as a means of strengthening their social and familial ties while boosting their self-confidence and sense of independence.

2017

Establishing the “Pakal: Company, Community, Cohesion Program”

The program aims to build a renewed sense of community and solidarity among army reservists.

2020
The 10th Anniversary of the Gala for Iranian Women in Israel

The 10th Anniversary of the Gala for Iranian Women in Israel

2020 marks the 10th anniversary of the Gala for Iranian Women in Israel. Each year, in March, the event celebrates women in the community and their work. The prestigious event includes performances, dances, and is produced voluntarily by women in the community. Profits are then invested in new projects for the community.