We are proud to be have experienced and dedicated professionals leading our efforts around the world.

  • Shachar Zahavi

    Founding Director / CEO

    Shachar is an experienced aid worker, manager, and fundraiser who has spent the last 18 years raising awareness and responding to international humanitarian causes.

    Shachar's first exposure to humanitarian emergencies was the Rwanda genocide in 1994. He began a campaign and collected rice and other emergency relief items, built a team and began sending humanitarian assistance to help victims. Shortly after that, he joined ‘Latet’, established their international humanitarian department, and began spearheading humanitarian relief operations in disaster and war-torn areas of over 16 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Realizing the enormous potential Israel has to contribute to the field of international humanitarian assistance, Shachar founded IsraAID: The Israel Forum for International Humanitarian Aid in 2001. A decade later, Shachar operates as the face of IsraAID, dealing with all aspects of the organization’s work, from fundraising to project planning. Finally, Shachar is also a lecturer on humanitarian causes in Israel and around the world.

  • Navonel Glick (Voni)

    Chief Operating Officer

    Voni is an Israeli/Canadian citizen with more than 8 years’ experience in disaster response, international development, and non-profit management.

    Navonel Glick (Voni) is IsraAID’s Chief Operating Officer at the organization’s headquarters in Tel Aviv, Israel. He is responsible for all the day-to-day leadership and oversees the general management of the organization. Prior to this role, Voni served as IsraAID’s Programs Director for 3 years, leading disaster-response missions throughout the globe. These include notably the Philippines after Typhoon Haiyan, Sierra Leone after the Ebola outbreak, Northern Iraq since the emergence of the Islamic State, and many more. Before joining IsraAID, Voni spent 4 years in Nepal with the organization Tevel b'Tzedek, working in volunteer management and long-term development projects to alleviate poverty with communities in rural and urban settings. An Israeli/Canadian citizen, Voni completed an International Baccalaureat in France in 2004, before joining McGill University in Montreal, Canada.

  • Yotam Polizer

    Global Partnerships Director/Asia Regional Director

    Born and raised in a small village in Northern Israel, Yotam has been a social activist from a young age, and today boasts more than 10 years of experience in humanitarian projects around the world.

    Yotam began his social activism working with juvenile delinquents in a rehabilitation center. His achievements include launching a ground-breaking program to pair Israeli army volunteers with special-needs children, as well as a youth leadership and community development project in Bedouin villages of Israel’s Negev desert in 2007, Yotam joined the Tevel B’Tzedek’s development project in Nepal, where he spent three and a half years as a Project Coordinator. During this time, he was also employed by the Israeli Embassy as Consular Assistant. As the Asia Regional Director, Yotam oversees all IsraAID’s programs in Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, and the Philippines.

  • Naama Gorodischer

    Global Programs Director

    Naama is a native Israeli with Chilean citizenship who has spent the better part of the last 10 years dedicated to improving education in Israel and Africa.

    She obtained her undergraduate degree in Sociology, Anthropology and Education and her Masters in Community Development Studies, both from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Prior to her studies Naama worked in Uganda, where she founded together with partners a local NGO Dubbed ‘Little Light’. The NGO has been operating an informal school and community center in one of the biggest slums in Kampala for out of school children ever since 2006. Naama has extensive experience in the field of education, specifically with youth at risk and victimized populations both in the formal and the non-formal education system and in out-of-home care programs. Following her M.A studies Naama was involved in the management of a peacebuilding program in Sri-Lanka, in a Sarvodaya-USAID project. Since 2013 Naama has been working with IsraAID, initially as the Kenya Country Director leading operations in Kakuma refugee camp in the fields of Water-Sanitation and Hygiene, Psychosocial support, Relief programs and Capacity building activities. Currently, Naama is IsraAID's Global Programs Director, spending her time between the field and the head-quarters in Tel Aviv, opening new operations in emergencies and supervising IsraAID's programs in the 19 countries where the organization has missions.

  • Ben Gido

    WASH Sector Coordinator

    Ben is an Environmental Engineer, experienced in WASH interventions and water projects in challenging environments.

    Ben began working in challenging environments in 2007 as a field coordinator for an agriculture company in East Ethiopia. The severe water concerns the population was facing led to Bens' passion and extensive knowledge of water science and technology. Ben holds a B.Sc. in Soil and Water Science at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, a M.Sc. in Environmental Science, Faculty of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Technion, Israel. His wide-ranging knowledge on this topic has brought him to IsraAID as the establisher of the WASH department. Ben has been working with IsraAID since 2013. Currently he is working on developing a combination of low-tech and suitable high-tech solutions, facility construction and technology transfers of short term interventions as well as long term development projects.

  • Natalie Revesz

    Haiti Country Director

    Natalie is a native Israeli with American citizenship who has been working in the field of education for almost two decades, in Israel, USA and France.

    Natalie specializes in working with children and adults with special needs. Previously Natalie coordinated and operated a one- of- a- kind professional training program for students with complex ADD syndrome, at Ruppin Technological College. Natalie has extensive management experience in both profit and non-profit organizations. She holds a B.Ed degree from Kibbutzim College of Education in Tel Aviv, and an MSM (Master of Science in Management) degree from the Polytechnic institute of NYU. Today she lives with her family in Port-Au- Prince, Haiti, running IsraAID's programs in the field of GBV(gender based violence) and childhood trauma.

  • Diddy Mymin

    Haiti and Sierra Leone MHPSS Professional advisor

    Dr Diddy Mymin Kahn brings her professional skills as a clinical psychologist together with her love of the arts to her work as a trauma specialist in humanitarian aid and intervention.

    She has over 22 years experience working in the UK, Hong Kong, Israel, Sierra Leone, and Haiti as a clinician, supervisor, trainer and group facilitator. She has 15 years of clinical experience in the National Health Service in the UK. She co-founded and managed a dynamic community based open art studio in London. Diddy has been involved in assisting African refugees in Tel Aviv for the past 6 years, managing a psycho social service and co-founding an arts -based women’s empowerment NGO for refugees surviving torture and GBV. Diddy is currently professional advisor for the IsraAID Mental Health and Psycho-Social Support (MHPSS) Ebola response project in Sierra Leone and GBV program in Haiti.

  • Yael Or

    Philippines Country Director

    Yael is an Israeli agronomist and community development specialist. Her experience includes working in cross cultural settings, in the fields of agriculture & environment, children & youth, group facilitation and project management.

    Yael holds a B.Sc. degree in Plant Science in Agriculture and an MA degree in Community Development Studies, both from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Some of her recent experiences includes coordinating an independent Palestinian-Israeli volunteering cooperation project; planning and implementing a community garden project as a part of a food security program in Oaxaca, Mexico, and; improving interaction between organizations and communities they work within, by making organizational information and language accessible and putting an emphasis on the human factor and cultural sensitivity. IsraAID Philippines' Country Director, Yael is developing and promoting participatory projects in the areas of Mental Health and Psycho-Social Support (MHPSS), food security and agricultural livelihood, and reconstruction and recovery. When in Israel, Yael lives in kibbutz Giv'at Brenner.

  • Ophelie Namiech

    South Sudan Country Director

    Originally from France, Ophelie has been working in the fields of international law, diplomacy and international development in Europe, Americas, Middle East and Africa for the past 10 years.

    Ophelie holds a Master in International Law from the University of Amsterdam as well as a Master of International Affairs (International Security Policy) from Columbia University in NYC which enabled her to develop a unique understanding of current global political and legal challenges in the field of peace and security. She also has more than 4 years of experience working in the United Nations context both at headquarters in Geneva and in New York combined with 5 years of field experience in Israel/Palestinian Territories, Americas and East Africa. This experience not only enabled her to develop strong skills in project management but also to acquire a deep understanding of both the diplomatic and development worlds. After working on Sudan affairs at the United Nations Security Council and the Department of Peacekeeping Operations in NYC, Ophelie opened IsraAID’s office in South Sudan in the aftermath of the country’s independence in 2011. She has been living and working in South Sudan ever since, designing, implementing and evaluating development programs with IsraAID, with a particular focus on Security Sector Reform, Protection (Gender-Based Violence, Women Empowerment, Child Protection and Post-trauma assistance), and Public Health. Through her work, she seeks to bolster the role of Israel in international development and nation-building, while accompanying local partners and communities in their efforts to design and implement their own development programs. Ophelie is currently contributing to the publication of an academic book on Israel-South Sudan strategic relationships, further exploring the two countries she is most passionate about.

  • Mayumi Yoshida

    Japan Country Director

    Mayumi is a native Japanese with over 8 years of experiences in management of community development projects and disaster response in the Middle East and in the disaster-afflicted Tohoku (Japan) where she was born.

    In 2007, after joining an internship program in Kosovo provided by a Japanese NGO, Mayumi decided to end her career at a Japanese trading firm and relocated to the Middle East to manage grass-roots community development projects by a Japanese NGO. She lived in Jordan and Palestine for the period of five years, and engaged in projects with a focus on economic improvement through improvement of agricultural practices and products as well as market development. In 2012, she moved back to Tohoku area of Japan which had suffered catastrophic damages from the giant tsunamis and implemented numbers of projects which included emergence response, psychosocial care and economic development projects. She joined JISP in Oct 2015, and now oversees the entire operations of the organization both in Japan and overseas.

  • Alex Theran

    Kenya Country Director

    Alex is an experienced leader in global disaster response on several continents, including North America, Asia, and Africa.

    Alex is IsraAID Country Director for Kenya where she is responsible for maintaining, implementing, and supporting humanitarian and development projects in Kakuma refugee camp, Kakuma town, and Nairobi. She leads IsraAID's Kenya activities across multiple sectors that display Israel's expertise, including water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), psychosocial services, and medical care. She comes to the team with a background in disaster management and response both in the United States and around the world. Alex's experience is varied, and she has responded to several disasters, including Hurricane Sandy in New York City and Typhoon Haiyan "Yolanda" in Leyte, Philippines. She obtained her Masters degree from Metropolitan College New York's Emergency and Disaster Management Program, and was a John D. Solomon Fellow for Public Service with the NYC Department of Health.

  • Michael Gottlieb

    Uganda Country Director

    After working on health care, improved housing, fairer elections and coastal protection laws at the California state legislature, then on international trade issues in Geneva, Michael shifted to the field of potable water, community hygiene promotion and safe sanitation (WASH) in developing countries.

    The field of WASH – with its varied and demanding constituencies - is similar to the give-and-take of policy and electoral campaigns, but it has the added bonus of working on the ground to see real differences in improving peoples’ lives. Michael’s WASH philosophy is that people everywhere wish for the basic dignity of clean water and safe sanitation. After asking people what they want in improved WASH services, with them he helps to push for improved practices and engages them to participate in collective action – empowering people to help themselves and also demand institutional help from the government. He has worked in both development and humanitarian aid contexts in Afghanistan, South Sudan and Jordan. Michael’s studies culminated in degrees from Loughborough University (UK), the Monterey Institute of International Studies and the University of California, Berkeley, but in this field - as in life - keep an open mind and you’ll learn new stuff all the time. His family made aliya from Michigan, USA, when he was a child.

  • Ben Dagani

    Nepal Country Director

    Ben is an East Asia and environmental specialist with experience in management, business development, innovation and technology.

    Ben was a social and political activist as a young teenager – working with youth, human rights, workers’ rights and marginalized communities. He fell in love with Asia, particularly with Nepal and India, at the age of 21 following his army service. Ever since, he's been volunteering and implementing development projects in agriculture, WASH, Livelihood and more. Ben also has management and business skills from working on China-Israel Technology and business cooperation projects. Ben holds a BA in East Asia studies and currently completing his MA thesis in environmental studies, both from Tel Aviv university. Ben received several excellence scholarships and finished his studies with special remarks and in the Dean honor list.

  • Andra Weissberg

    Deputy Programs Director

    Andra is a dedicated humanitarian with extensive experience working on Psychosocial Support programs and has committed herself to ensuring that those in crisis receive support.

    Andra is originally from California holding a Masters in Social Work specializing in trauma and crisis management. Andra has always had a passion to help people and from a very early age took a proactive role in helping others around her volunteering with many grassroots projects. During her undergraduate degree Andra studied sociology and volunteered for two years with a suicide and crisis hotline. After graduation she made Aliyah to Israel and joined the army working as a liaison to the Jordanian army planning and managing humanitarian aid projects paid for and implemented by both the Israeli and Jordanian armies. Following her army service Andra received her Master's in Social Work and began to work with NGO's in Israel providing them technical support. Andra joined IsraAID in January 2015 as the Deputy Country Director of Sierra Leone and has continued in Sierra Leone as the Country Director.

  • Tammy Bar-On

    Nepal MHPSS Professional Advisor

    Tammy Bar-On, PhD, is a registered art therapist and teaches in the Graduate School of Creative Arts Therapies at Haifa University.

    She helped create the Art Therapy Division program and was its Head from 2008-2013. In the summer of 2013, Tammy was the head trainer in an expressive arts psycho-social support project in Kakuma Refugee Camp in Kenya where, together with a group of graduates from The Graduate School of Creative Arts, she taught expressive arts psycho-social support to a group of refugees. The project was a joint effort of IsraAID and Haifa University. At present she is the Professional Advisor of the IsraAID Mental Health and Psycho-Social Support (MHPSS) training in Ormoc, the Philippines, in the aftermath of the Yolanda typhoon. She participated in the training of a Philippine core group which is now conducting further trainings, together with therapists from Israel. She is a proud mother and grandmother.

  • Raz Arbel

    United States of America Head of Missions

    Raz is an experienced emergency relief aid worker, manager, company founder, and fundraiser specializing in strengthening of communities both in Israel and in the USA.

    Raz had initially joined IsraAID as a part of the efforts emergency relief team of Colorado, ultimately becoming head of missions in Wimberley Texas, and Columbia South Carolina. Today raz helps in humanitarian efforts as head of missions in USA, while he resides with his family in Israel. Raz has over 20 years of experience serving at the Negev Highland Search and Rescue team. With a love of the outdoors, he has managed the Negev Highland Tourism for 13 years in the partnership department in Ramat Hanegev Municipality in Israel. With his extensive knowledge and experience he founded the Hiking company, TREKITISRAEL. For over two years, he has represented his community as a Jewish agency Shalich within Colorado, USA. He has spent the last 15 years working alongside partnerships within Jewish communities in Israel and in the USA.

  • Chelsea Zfaz

    Burma Head of Mission

    Chelsea is committed to international humanitarian aid and has worked in conflict, post-conflict and emergency relief.

    Chelsea immigrated to Israel in 2007, when she was accepted into the Larson School of Government, Diplomacy and Strategy at the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya. She received her Undergraduate Degree in Middle Eastern Studies and Conflict Resolution in 2010. She received her Master’s Degree in Emergency and Disaster Management from Tel Aviv University in 2015. Chelsea served in the Israel Defense Forces from 2012-2013, in the Strategic Division of the International Military Cooperation Department, where she aided in international policy development. She has experience in international humanitarian law advocacy, civil rights advocacy and disaster management.

  • Eyaid Ahmed


    Eyaid is an accountant, tax consultant and government certified financial consultant with over 10 years of experience working in the non-profit sector.

    He holds a BA in economics and MBA in Business Management from Ben Gurion University (BGU), and is currently finishing an MBA in Law from Bar-Ilan University. Eyaid heads an accounting office in Beer Sheva, and has been teaching tax and accounting at Sapir college for 10 years. Since 2009, he has also been lecturing for the BGU Management School's MBA program. Highly involved in the research sector, Eyaid’s research proposal recently won an Excellence Award from the Israeli Center for Third Sector Research in Israel. He is also about to start his PhD studies at the School of Management, where he is hoping to focus on "Employment in the Arab sector in Israel".

  • Michele Bornstein

    Sierra Leone Country Director

    Michele is a humanitarian seeking to empower communities to meet their needs and realize their aspirations.

    As Country Director for Sierra Leone, Michele is leading an effort to provide mental health support to communities affected by the Ebola epidemic. Prior to joining IsraAID, Michele worked for the United Nations Development Programme in New York. Michele holds a master’s degree in humanitarian policy from Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs, and a bachelor's degree from Wellesley College, where she majored in History and Middle Eastern studies. After college, she traveled throughout Europe as a Watson Fellow studying the evolution of glassblowing techniques. Michele has lived and worked in United States, Europe, Asia, and Africa.