Shanti House Tel Aviv
Shanti House Tel Aviv was founded in 1984. During those years there were no frameworks in Israel that addressed the needs of “street youth”. Mariuma opened her home voluntarily to these young people, provided shelter, a hot meal and assistance to find their own strength to help themselves transit off-street life and move forward to an independent life.
The house was quickly filled with homeless youth, and youth at risk and in immediate danger. Mariuma realized that her home was the only solution for these teens and she began improvising accommodation for them, thus began her work with at-risk youth in Tel Aviv.
A girl who stayed at the home at the time said, “I feel really Shanti here.” When Mariuma asked her about the meaning of the word “Shanti,” the girl replied, “Love and tranquility” in Sanskrit. One of the boys in the house took black spray paint and wrote on the wall, “Welcome to Shanti House.”
The children chose the name “Shanti House” and it became well known among the youngsters who needed help.
Since then, Shanti House helped tens of thousands of youth at risk and in immediate danger.
These youngsters staying at Shanti House were forced to leave their home due to physical, sexual, verbal abuse, orphanhood, abandonment, etc., or teens who were ejected from formal institutional care settings, new immigrants and lone soldiers, that find themselves homeless, at risk and in danger.
Shanti House accepts youth from all over the country, from all sectors, from all population strata regardless of religion, race, sex or gender.
The Shanti houses are the last chance they will ever have for a warm and loving home, before descending into life on the streets.
In the construction of the houses Mariuma put emphasis on its interior and exterior design. From her perception youth who come to Shanti house, those who lived in alienated places and went through difficult experiences, deserve a warm and aesthetic home full of optimism and attention. The aesthetic look of the house has a direct impact on these teenagers readiness to choose life and their wish to become part of Shanti house. Thus, the connection between the aesthetics of the place and the experience it creates is immediate and has a huge impact over time on their decision and determination to choose life and save themselves.
The Shanti House children take care of the cleanliness of the houses as part of the respect and appreciation for the place in which they chose to live.
Shanti House Tel Aviv
The permanent home in Tel Aviv was established thanks to a generous donation from Mrs. Marian and Mr. Doron Livnat who chose to commemorate the name of the late Mr. Yitzhak Livnat on this building, and thanks to the allocation of land from the Tel Aviv-Jaffa Municipality headed by Mr. Ron Huldai.
In February 2018, the new Shanti House was inaugurated in the presence of Israel’s former President Mr. Reuven Rivlin, Minister of Welfare and Social Services Mr. Haim Katz, Israel’s new President Isaac Hertzog (former Chairman of the Jewish Agency), Tel Aviv-Jaffa Mayor Mr. Ron Huldai, Livnat family, dear souls who helped Shanti House continue its existence, staff and our heroes – the children of Shanti House.
The new Shanti House, is located next to the Clock Square in Jaffa, overlooks the sea and is colorfully and aesthetically designed providing youth with a warm, and respectful welcome and creating a family atmosphere.
Desert Shanti House - Youth Village
In Israel today, there are about 330,000 children and youth at risk, 28,000 of which are from the southern region.
The construction of the Desert Shanti House Youth Village began in 2001 with Mariuma’s vision, with the help of the Ramat Hanegev Council and the former head of the council, the late Mr. Shmuel Ripman, Uzi Habashush, the Rashi Foundation former CEO Mr. Eli Alaluf, Mr. Francis and Mrs. Mary-Frances Minkoff and with the help of the Ministry of Transport, the Ministry of the Negev Galilee, the JNF and other donors who joined in fulfilling the dream.
The Desert Shanti House Youth Village was officially inaugurated on November 23, 2009, in the presence of the late Israel President Mr. Shimon Peres, the former Minister of Welfare and Social Services, Mr. Yitzhak Herzog (today Israel’s President), Mr. Francis and Mrs. Mary-Frances Minkoff and many other donors.
The Desert Shanti House is a therapeutic and rehabilitative village that helps youth from all over the country and especially from the southern region and serves as a home for youth at risk and in immediate danger.
The Village was established and operates according to the model of Shanti House in Tel Aviv, in order to address the problem of youth in the south.
The desert and its nature are central motifs in the therapeutic techniques offered to the youth.
The Village expands the Shanti House therapeutic tools and methods: a therapeutic horse ranch, a petting zoo, a vocational and craft center, agriculture therapy, Watsu (hydrotherapy), a sports center, music therapy are conducted within the Village. There is also involvement in social projects within the village and no less important, within the developing community in the south region, by offering some of these projects to the children from the local community of the Negev.
Despite its location, the Desert Shanti House Youth Village is accessible to schools, hospitals, community services and youth employment.
The Desert Shanti House Youth Village is a project of a national value. Its contribution to the southern region in general and the Negev, in particular, is enormous. In the establishment of the village, values of love for the Land of Israel, pioneering and a strong desire to change the face and future of the State of Israel are expressed.