We described here our process of making the East Jerusalem branch of the National Insurance Institute (NII) culturally competent. We began with training sessions in the beginning of the year; now, we’re deepening that learning.
Over the summer we met with the “Excellence Team” of the branch, a dedicated group of 8 professionals who volunteered to improve the level of service given at the branch. They are also in charge of the assimilation of cultural competence principles. During the meetings the group began to develop a training workshop for all workers.
As part of this development, the Excellence Team is also going out into the field. Last week they visited four organizations that have already undergone processes of cultural competency adaptation: ALYN Rehabilitative Hospital, Hadassah College, the Municipal Welfare Office in the Bucharim neighborhood, and the David Precint (which includes Mt. Zion and the Old City) of the Police Department. The Team interviewed representatives in order to better understand the processes each one went through, and to see what can be applied to the NII East Jerusalem branch.
At the ALYN Rehabilitative Hospital, for example, the team were surprised and impressed by the (culturally competent) services, and felt that the hospital wasn’t known well enough in East Jerusalem. It seems that they’ve now become ALYN ambassadors in East Jerusalem.
In the future the Team will also be involved in the planning principles of the new branch, which can also have a significant impact on its cultural competency. Items on the list include: physical accessibility, signage, a nursing room, a prayer room, thinking about if it’s necessary to have separation between men and women, strengthening language among workers, and more.