Our Organization Model:

It started with very few feminists and a lot of enthusiasm. But there was no organized agenda or regular protocol, so we had to find and invent ways to operate. When we began our journey, many thought of us as a handful of fanatics who would never deliver. But that wasn’t the case.

Messy and enthusiastic, a new feminist movement has emerged that has had a considerable impact on Israeli society. After 30 years, we can ask ourselves if it is possible to maintain an organization with regular activities while remaining feminist in our modes of thinking and action. Can feminism be institutionalized? Can there be a systematic, organized feminist organization?

 

In the early days, trying to change the world was a matter of everyday life, and that led to immediate action. Years of activity have made it necessary to organize, create order and working protocols. The organization has grown and changed over the years, as have the women who founded and created it. New women continued to join the organization, shaping it and making changes over time. Once we ceased being a small group of friends and became a large organization, the need for guidelines emerged.

As “Isha L’Isha” continues to live and endure, many of us feel that the organization is important and that it enables us to maintain diverse and dynamic feminist activities. “Isha L’Isha” is a home for all women, with active members coming from different backgrounds, religions, and sexual orientations. They’ve all come here to grow, to contribute and to invest – some moving on while others stay.

Other activities that “Isha L’Isha” has supported and promoted include feminist conferences at the national level, the Al-Badil Coalition Against “Family Honour” Killings, Claf – a feminist lesbian community, and the founding of Kayan – an Arab feminist organization. We also consider our procedures and policies book to be an important contribution to the growth of the feminist community, which aims to help women and try to build a better and more equal society on a daily basis.

(Quoted from the organization’s book of procedures, written by Ayelet Ilani, Lili Buganim, Ruti Gur, and Orna Cohen, September 2000).

 

“Isha L’Isha” has several committees which deal with the daily activities of the organization:

The Board of Directors

Joining procedure

  • Each member of the organization can put her name forward for election to the committee.
  • Elections take place annually in the General Assembly.
  • 5-8 women are elected to the committee, in accordance with the “quarters” principle.

 

Membership duration and terms:

  • At least one-third of the new committee members will be women who have served on the outgoing committee.
  • There will be no spouses on the committee, nor will a woman whose spouse is an employee of the organization be eligible for election.
  • Membership is possible for a maximum of three consecutive years, after which a one-year cooling-off period is required before applying again.

 

Responsibilities:

  • Under the NGO Act, the members of the committee have a legal responsibility to the authorities or any other entity to which the organization is accountable.
  • The Board of Directors is responsible for delivering on the organization’s commitments to its donors. Two board members have signatory rights and are entitled to sign checks, applications, and agreements with funders.

Main tasks:

  • Preparing ideological and fundamental questions for the collective to discuss and make decisions.
  • Making decisions about the day-to-day operations of the organization, including the hiring and dismissal of employees.

 

Finance Committee

Joining procedure

The committee is elected once a year by the General Assembly

Membership duration and terms:

The committee consists of three staff members: the accountant, the fundraiser and a third team member. In addition, there will be two volunteers on the committee, including at least one member of the board of directors.

Responsibilities:

The committee is responsible for monitoring the ongoing financial state of the organization.

The committee is responsible for notifying the board of directors of any budget shortfall.

Main tasks:

  • The committee reviews the financial situation of the organization, according to the projects it was carrying out at the time. This review covers the current financial situation, as well as future spending and revenue for each project.
  • The committee is required to provide the board with a written report each quarter.

 

The “Woman Power” committee

Joining procedure

The collective will select the committee with the number of members corresponding to the number of women on staff. Each committee member will be assigned a paid staff member she will accompany and support. An additional committee member will be selected to coordinate the activities and program of the committee, with no staff member assigned.

Staff will be consulted on selecting all committee members except for the coordinator.

 

Membership duration and terms:

The committee is selected for one year

At least one member of the committee will be a member of the board

Spouses of paid staff are not eligible to serve on the committee

Any changes in the composition of the committee must be approved by the collective.

 

Responsibilities:

The committee is responsible for supporting the work of staff, in accordance with the organization’s work plan, and receiving monthly staff reports.

It is the committee’s special responsibility to alert the Board of Directors to any difficulties in the work performed by the staff or in the implementation of the organization’s work plan.

 

Main tasks:

The committee will accompany and support the work the organization’s staff.

Each staff member will have a reference person on the committee to guide and assist her in advancing her workplan.

 

Ad hoc committees

Joining procedure

These committees will be elected by the collective or the General Assembly for a specific mission and a fixed term.

 

Membership duration and terms:

Will be set according to the mandate given to each committee by the collective or by the General Assembly

Responsibilities:

Will be set according to the mandate given to each committee by the collective or by the General Assembly

Main tasks:

Will be set according to the mandate given to each committee by the collective or by the General Assembly