The Israel Free Loan Association (IFLA) is the largest Jewish interest free loan organization in the world. Since its inception only 25 years ago, IFLA has lent out nearly $240 million to over 54,000 low income families and struggling small businesses. Currently IFLA lends out another $20 million every year to Israelis. Thanks to strict checks and balances we have a repayment rate of 99.8%.
IFLA loans help all sectors of Israeli society in numerous ways. They enable Israelis without means to open small businesses or expand existing ones thereby supporting both themselves and others, help new immigrants move out of temporary housing and purchase apartments, enable university students to obtain academic degrees, allow ailing Israelis to purchase vital equipment and medicines or undergo operations, help struggling Israelis get back on their financial feet, and much, much more.
Helping People Help Themselves
Conventional charity can often hurt the recipient by making them dependent and lowering their self esteem. Free loans help without hurting by enabling people to empower themselves as everything they receive they eventually return. As the great Jewish sage Maimonides wrote – a loan is better than charity as it enables people to help themselves.
Don’t take our word for it. See what Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks has to say about our model in his remarks on the Torah portion of Re’eh and “Judaism’s Social Vision.”
A Renewable Financial Resource
At the IFLA we believe that just as paper, plastics, and metals can be recycled, so too can money. While in conventional charity the money is depleted, with free loans the source funds are preserved. And while with conventional charity its influence decreases over time with free loans the influence increases as time passes as more and more loans are provided, from same the funds, ad infinitum.
Founded in 1990 with an initial donation of $20,000 our current fund base of $42 million has been lent out over three times and continues to be recycled.
A Gift that Keeps Growing
Unfortunately we only reach a fraction of those who need our help. There are so many more needy Israelis we could help if we had the resources. The IFLA represents the charity of the future, empowering and renewable. Free loans are transforming our society by creating a recyclable financial resource that has the potential to help millions. A gift to the IFLA is one that perpetually grows, helping more and more people as time goes on. We invite you to become a part of this wonderful endeavor.