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Shely Cohen's Speech at the Knesset

Good afternoon and thank you to Chaver Knesset Dr. Avraham Neguise for hosting us today.
My name is Shely Cohen and I'm chairman of the ESP committee - endowments, scholarships, Pras and Sasi.

I'd like to speak to you for a moment about Simon Sinek's golden circle. He says that the difference between successful and unsuccessful organizations can be found in their approach to their endeavor. There are three circles - an inner, middle and outer circle. The outer circle is the 'what'. Every organization has this. Our 'what' is what we do so well – this year we are handing out scholarships to over 420 students. Some are Olim Chdashim from South Africa, some are Olim Vatikim, some are Dutch or Australian, and many are Israeli-born. Some are receiving based on financial need and some are volunteering in return. Some haven't made aliyah yet but we are hoping they will. And all are benefiting from the foresight and generosity of our donors.

The middle circle is the 'how'. All organizations have this too. How do we do it? We have dedicated staff,  like Dorron, our fearless leader who has brought us all here today, and Nava, the responsible adult amongst us. And we have Dana and Simone, who have worked tirelessly, not only for today's ceremony, but for months to ensure that each student has his or her needs met. We also have the most amazing committee of volunteers – all Olim, myself included – who really see this as an act of love. Thank you to Barry, Batya, Dave, Gabey, Perli, Phillip and Ros.

It's the inner circle that makes the difference between success and failure. This circle is the 'Why'.  Why do we do this? Well, the answer is in front of us right now – you are the 'Why' and the Knesset, which represents the State of Israel, is the 'Why', too. We are successful because what drives us is the understanding that you are the key to a better future here, in this miraculous country that we are all so privileged to be in. I wish us all continued success as we forge ahead in building a better, stronger, kinder society. Good luck.

I'd like to welcome four of our special students - Gabriel, Josh, Elisha and Teganya.
Thank you.

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