Ogen – Social Loan Fund, a not-for-profit lending fund and The Jewish Agency for Israel are launching the Emergency Fund for Nonprofits to assist nonprofit organizations suffering financially from the coronavirus crisis. The program includes provisions for immediate loans at a three percent interest rate, with no requirement for guarantors, along with financial consulting services that will help these organizations to stay afloat.
To finance the initiative, Ogen – formerly known as the Israel Free Loan Association – has allocated 30 million NIS in lending capital for the loans. The Jewish Agency has allocated an additional three million NIS from philanthropic sources toward guaranteeing the loans. The two organizations have also raised another three million NIS from Ogen donors, including the Migdal Group. Ogen and The Jewish Agency will continue working on expanding the budget of the loan fund and recruiting additional partners, including the Israeli government and philanthropic organizations in Israel and abroad.
The initiative aims to operate throughout the crisis period, offering loans of up to 400,000 NIS for a period of up to 60 months, with a six-month grace period and without guarantors.
There are around 16,000 nonprofit organizations in Israel. They employ hundreds of thousands of people – accounting for 16% of Israel’s labor force – and provide social, educational and other welfare services worth billions of shekels every year. Nonprofits account for six percent of Israel’s GDP.
Since the coronavirus crisis in Israel began at the beginning of March, tens of thousands of employees at nonprofit organizations have been laid off. There has been a dramatic surge in the number of organizations seeking emergency loans, including nonprofits that serve at-risk youth, battered women, the elderly, people with disabilities, populations with special needs and more.
Applications for loans are available via the Ogen website, www.ogen.org. Phone inquiries regarding loans should be made at 02-530-0780.