About the organization
LGBTQ Youth (14-22 y/o) living in Israel? Join us!
Click here to see the list of all the groups (list is in Hebrew)
Your charitable donation allows us to put together more leadership seminars for our youth groups, open additional social groups in the distant south and north, generate more anti-homophobia education programs in schools or open another youth center, providing a safe and open space for LGBT youth.
IGY – LGBTQ+ Youth Movement
The Israeli LGBTQ+ Youth Organization (IGY) was established in 2002and since then has become the largest LGBTQ+ organization in Israel.The organization works for social change towards a more equal and tolerant society and works directly with and for LGBTQ+ youth (13-23) in the stages of formulating their sexual and/or gender identity through regular weekly social-educational activities.
From its inception until today, our organization is the only nationwide organization that works for LGBTQ+ youth in Israel and in recent years has grown to be the largest of the LGBTQ+ community organizations in the country.
IGY has set itself the goal of working to empower LGBTQ+ youth to create a meaningful role for themselves in society and to encourage them to take part in shaping both their local communities and Israeli society as a whole. The organization’s work in education and social change includes both LGBTQ+ and heterosexual young people.
Our vision and work is to eradicate the phenomena of violence, racism and manifestations of homophobia in order to create a just, egalitarian and democratic society.
Youth at High-Risk
While not all LGBTQ youth have the same experiences, it is generally true that they are one of the groups most exposed to risk on a daily basis; international researches shows that approximately half of such young people – some 200,000 Israeli residents are LGBTQ youth at heightened risk. Many are the target of verbal, physical and sexual violence, including within the educational system, on IDF bases and at home, spaces that should be safe and secure.
According to the Research and Data Center of the Israeli Knesset, the incidence of suicide amongst LGBTQ+ adolescents is twice to three times as high as the incidence of suicide. The most vulnerable group is the Transgender community.
Even today, with the vast knowledge and public acceptance of LGBTQ+ people the, tens of thousands of young men and women are in the closet, sometimes coping alone with important and essential questions about their sexual and/or gender identity. Almost 50% of youth report experiencing sexual or verbal violence in their school and almost 10% experience physical violence on a daily basis, making IGY's social activity all the more important in and of itself and specifically for the young people in question.
The work we do:
Social Groups: 110 social groups constitute safe spaces for youth andyoung people in various areas throughout the country (from the South to the North, center and periphery). Part of the groupsare target groups that cater for Orthodox and ultra-Orthodox homes, youth from the Arab community, youth of Ethiopian origins, LGBTQ+ deaf youth and Transgender youth.
Youth clubs: 12informal educational spaces (throughout the country) in order to provide a safe space that gives a sense of belonging and various of activities.During the work of the social groups and youth clubs, we encouraged youth to take responsibility for Israeli society and to lead social change.
Nir Program: This program was launched in memory of the late Nir Katz who was murdered in a hate crime in one of IGY’s youth centers in 2009. It is aimed at LGBTQ+ and heterosexual youth and combines studies of gender and sexuality, with the aim of creating dialog on the subjects of acceptance of the ‘other’, homophobia, biphobia, transphobia and racism in schools.Nir program based on the American gay straightalliance.
OnlineForums & Activities (DIGI): IGY's Forums Project serve as a virtual home for over 1,180,000 users, 30K unique visitors,10 WhatsApp calls per day (in addition to the dozens of phone calls we receive to our central office) the vast majority of which are from teenagers. The forums are composed of different "chat rooms" which allow each and every teenager to explore their identity and receive answers from IGY’s forum facilitators. In addition, IGY's volunteers operating WhatsApp lines and give the option for youth to ask questions and receive answers without being member of one of the forums. The online team search on LGBTQ+ websites and applications for the presence of at-risk LGBTQ+ youth, with the aim of approaching them and finding a way to protect them from harm.
Year of Service: At the end of the school year and before military service, graduates are offered the opportunity to perform a year of volunteer service in various organizations, of which IGY is one. The Year of Service groups take part in IGY’s formal and informal educational programs across the country mainly in the social and geographic periphery of Israel.
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer as well as many other gender and sexual identities.
Schools ‘Climate’ Study, 2016. Magnus Hirschfield Institute, IGY.
Including Arab-Israelis/Palestinians who live in Israel, Druze & Bedouins.