ITEC raises $800,000 for bomb shelters and children’s services

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Posted on: 11/22/2023

Hundreds of New Yorkers affirmed their support for Israel on Tuesday, Nov. 14 at the Israel Tennis & Education Centers (ITEC) event at Lavan, honoring philanthropist and legendary shoe designer Stuart Weitzman.

Weitzman made a transformative contribution to new children’s tennis and sports facilities this year. Weitzman’s gift will support two projects at Centers in Israel – one in the heart of Jerusalem, at the Ben B. & Joyce E. Eisenberg Israel Tennis & Education Center, and the other in Ramat Hasharon, at the Larry Greenspon ITEC Ramat Hasharon Center. As part of the evening’s events, Weitzman cut the ribbon to celebrate the completion of the Stuart Weitzman Tennis Complex in Jerusalem. 

“If we want to live together peacefully, we have to start playing together peacefully,” said Weitzman in his remarks to the 300 attendees, joined by his wife and two daughters. Sometimes, children have to lead the way.”

“Through our work, we’ve been able to help our children begin to heal their wounds and give them moments of joy, normalcy and security,” said Wendy Slavin, president of the ITEC North American Board. “That’s what this night is about. About Israel, about unity, hope, children, and about joy.” 

One of Israel’s largest social service organizations, ITEC has launched several critical initiatives to help thousands of children and their families cope and feel safer after the horrific attacks on October 7th. With nearly 50 years of history in social services and deeply rooted throughout Israel, ITEC reacted immediately and pivoted from tennis centers to community centers, offering our children mental health counseling, food, shelter, and moments of joy during these unimaginable times.

Many of its staff have grown up in the ITEC community. Two of the event’s speakers, Beer-Sheva Center Manager Yaniv Sakira and Yoni Yair, Senior Vice President of Development shared their experiences with ITEC as their home away from home and shared heartbreaking personal stories. The evening concluded with a highly successful auction to equip Centers with bomb shelters, emergency vehicles, and mental health support.



Israel Tennis & Education Centers (ITEC) empowers children and transforms lives by providing opportunities to support Israeli children regardless of geography, religion, ethnicity, physical ability, or socioeconomic status. Since opening its first center in Ramat Hasharon in 1976, ITEC has helped over 500,000 children, many of whom live in underserved towns throughout Israel. ITEC currently serves nearly 7,000 children weekly throughout 24 Israeli communities, stretching from the Lebanese border in the North to Beer-Sheva. The ITEC Foundation, a 501(c)(3), is the fundraising organization for ITEC, with offices in New York City, Florida, and Toronto. For more information, visit