AMIT welcomes all children and enables students to realize their potential and strengthen Israeli society by educating and nurturing children from diverse ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds within a framework of innovation, academic excellence and Jewish values. Founded in 1925, AMIT serves 40,000 students annually across 96 schools in 32 cities throughout Israel. Its continued growth and support would not be possible without the generous support of donors committing to major gifts.
Not much is known to us about the life of the late Irene Morris. The quiet and unassuming Manhattan resident kept a low profile in regard to her charitable giving. However, she must have been deeply impressed with the work of AMIT; she left a substantial gift—her first major donation—to AMIT in her will. A friend and colleague spoke to AMIT of Irene’s belief in the power of education and her fondness for organizations dedicated to empowering children with opportunities to better their lives. Though she wished to remain private in her lifetime, he explained, she was always extremely generous, keeping a long list of the birthdays of her friend’s children so she could send them gifts each year. She always liked to treat her friends to meals at Manhattan restaurants. While AMIT could not thank Irene in person, they honor her legacy through the sacred work they undertake each day to better the lives of the children of AMIT.
Lou and Lee Benjamin have made several dedications over the past years and just made a five-year commitment of funds to support AMIT’s work. Lou Benjamin passed away several years ago; their last dedication was the Lou and Lee Benjamin Chair for Excellence at Kiryat Malachi. Their son Michael said that his dad truly appreciated and valued the educational excellence of AMIT. They previously dedicated the Lou and Lee Benjamin Award for Academic Excellence, an annual award given at the end of the year at the principal’s conference. Lee and Michael both recently visited the Kiryat Malachi high school last year. “In honor of my husband Lou Benjamin, my son Michael and I are proud to support the education that AMIT provides. AMIT will live on in the legacy of my husband through our continued support of AMIT.” Lee Benjamin resides in Boca Raton, Fla.; and West Hempstead, N.Y.
“AMIT major gifts are the lifeblood of AMIT’s future,” says executive vice president Andrew Goldsmith. “AMIT is a safe haven of education for all the children of Israel to continue to build a nation of productive citizens despite their background and regardless of the political climate. We are forever grateful for donor gifts of any size to keep us moving forward,” he adds.
Looking ahead …
AMIT continues to innovate and lead the world in education. In 2014, it launched a new methodology called Gogya as a vision to change Israel’s education system through a 21st-century lens focused on preparing today’s students for tomorrow’s economic, technological and societal shifts. AMIT will soon debut a new cutting-edge Kfar Batya campus, which will serve as an incubator for the development and implementation model of innovative educational frameworks. AMIT Kfar Batya will be a place to nurture, challenge and inspire students to develop shared values of excellence, unity and tolerance, preparing them to become productive citizens and proud leaders of Israel. AMIT Kfar Batya will be the epicenter of practical change, a hub for education thought leaders and the experimental teaching laboratory for thousands of teachers and students across Israel. The educational advancements and new methodologies conceived at the campus will be shared with the education community worldwide.
AMIT Kfar Batya will focus on academic excellence and be grounded in AMIT’s Torah values, with the singular goal of leveling the playing field for all Israeli children regardless of socio-economic background, disability, or personal challenges. The new campus will feature the Evan and Layla Green Family Foundation Gogya Building and Program; The Educators’ Innovation Center; AMIT Headquarters; Community Athletic Complex; The Gwen Straus Junior and Senior High School for Boys; Elementary School; Welcome Center; Memorial Park for Fallen Soldiers; and Outdoor Amphitheater.
For information on AMIT, go to: www.amitchildren.org.