The Israeli aid and relief organization IsraAID has won a German award for its work with Syrian, Iraqi, and Afghan refugees across the country, set to be presented on Monday to the organization by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
The annual Integration Award is the German federal government’s highest honor in that category.
IsraAID will receive the prize for its Brückenbau (“Bridge Building”) project, an initiative that provides psychological support in Arabic for at-risk refugee women and victims of gender-based violence living in shelters, and training and counseling for shelter staff. The program is run in partnership with ZWST, the Welfare Board of Jews in Germany.
The organization has been operating in Germany since 2015, at the height of the refugee crisis that saw at least a million refugees and asylum seekers reach the country.
“IsraAID’s team in Germany is a multicultural mosaic of Arabic-, Hebrew-, German- and English-speaking psychologists, social workers, art therapists and educators… [who] utilize their international experience and intercultural approach to promote the sustainable well-being and integration of refugees in Germany,” the organization said in a statement announcing the recognition.
IsraAID co-CEOs Yotam Polizer and Navonel Glick said: “We are humbled and honored to receive this special recognition from the German Chancellor for IsraAID’s work supporting the needs, rights, and integration of refugees in Germany, and we are particularly proud of the IsraAID Germany team and our strong partnership with ZWST, which makes this program possible.”