That question was supposed to make you crack a smile. You can quibble about the absolute reliability of the information on Wikipedia, but there’s practically no one out there that hasn’t at least used the site as a jumping off point for further investigation. The concept of the collaborative centralized knowledge base is magnificent, if flawed.
So how about taking that concept and tweaking it to make a huge difference in people’s lives for a specific subject area, say, social rights in Israel? Well, that is exactly what the organization Kol Zchut (All Rights) is doing, and The Shira Pransky Project is proud to be taking part in it.
You can find out more about Kol Zchut in this recent JPost article, and by visiting their site, but the gist is that they have built a collaborative, Wikipedia-like, website for all information about rights and entitlements in Israel- and unlike Wikipedia, it is all written by experts, often by representatives of the goverment offices and ministries discussed.
Their mission is to improve the low uptake of social rights in Israel, especially among weaker populations, and The Shira Pransky Project is taking part on behalf of the English speaking immigrant population, specifically in the area of health rights and related circumstances.
We have begun by translating their healthcare related portals (categorized listings of articles on each entitlement) and have set up volunteers to start inputting these to the English side of the website. This stage is about alleviating cumbersome navigation to vital information, but the individual articles linked to these portals are still in Hebrew, for now.
The first step makes the information a little more accessible- and that may be enough to make a difference for a vast number of English speakers- but it is only the beginning. Of course we must go on to translate the hundreds of individual content articles describing rights and entitlements, who they apply to, how to access them, and all the related resources. This undertaking this will take time, more volunteers, and more funding, but its fulfillment will mean a huge leap forward for English accessibility to Israeli rights and support.
We have always believed in the power of accessibility through awareness, facilitating productive interactions with assistance professionals, aiding the infrastructure of support that is in place, and collaborating with others. It’s truly exciting to be working with another organization dedicated to these very same ideals, and on a project with so much potential for making our goals a reality!
If you realize the importance of initiatives like this, please consider making a donation to The Shira Pransky Project, or getting involved in other ways.