ImpactIsrael Welcomes Eden Yegezaw
Finally, after nearly two years of travel restrictions and related Covid concerns, we’ve been able to bring visitors from Yemin Orde stateside. It was very special to have Yemin Orde graduate Eden Igzau here to visit with our Board members, staff, and friends old and new in Atlanta, Philadelphia, New York, and as a guest speaker at an event for the Jewish Federation of Somerset, Hunterdon, and Warren Counties.
Eden moved to Israel from Ethiopia at the age of 8 and eventually found her way to Yemin Orde. The trek to her current success was not the easiest of paths. But, it’s been a rewarding one.
At Yemin Orde, Eden immediately excelled. Upon graduation, she attended an elite leadership Mechina (pre-IDF) program.
Over time, Eden became a distinguished officer. After serving in the army, she continued her education, ultimately transferring to IDC — one of Israel’s leading academic institutes — for a joint degree in law and government. She recently completed the four-year program and is an intern in the State Attorney Office for the High Court of Justice Department.
“I don’t know what would have happened if I never came to the Village,” Eden pondered when speaking at the annual ImpactIsrael Board of Directors Meeting. “Maybe I would be in jail, or somewhere else. Certainly not working in the supreme court.”
One unique aspect of Yemin Orde is that graduates receive support long after graduation, and the academic scholarships Eden received to continue her university studies is a perfect example of that. But for Eden, as with other graduates, the support is a two-way street. While it is common for graduates to visit the Village to see staff members and give talks to students, Eden not only just makes it a priority, but goes the extra mile to connect with the youth. Many students find her to be incredibly motivating.
"One of the beautiful things the Village taught me," Eden said in a recent meetings "is that nothing can limit me. In my life, I've had to break a lot of conventions, like being the first in my family to attend high school or to enlist in the IDF. But all those achievements were accomplished with the help of the excellent education, tools, and resources I received from my time at Yemin Orde”