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Dr. Alon Haberfeld- December 2023

קהילת סיד-ישראל מורכבת מארגונים ומאנשי ונשות מקצוע במגוון תחומים הקשורים לפיתוח בינ"ל וסיוע הומניטרי. בואו נכיר את חברי הקהילה ונלמד מהעשייה שלהם ברחבי העולם.



Interview with Dr. Alon Haberfeld - CEO of Fair Planet

We at SID-Israel were devastated to learn that our partner and friend, CEO of Fair Planet Shoshan Haran was kidnapped alongside members of her family on October 7th. They were kidnapped from their home in Kibbutz Be'eri, taken into Gaza territory by Hamas terrorists and mostly released after 50 days in captivity. In the honor of her and her vision for peace and the alleviation of world hunger, we dedicate this month's Sid-spot to her and Fair Plant.

Among those kidnapped into Gaza during the horrific attack of Hamas-Isis on Israel on October 7th was Founder and President of Fair Planet, Dr. Shoshan Haran, who was kidnapped alongside family members from her home in Kibbutz Bee’ri. After 50 days in captivity, she and several family members were thankfully released back into Israel on November 25th.

We recently had the opportunity to interview Dr. Alon Haberfeld, the CEO of Fair Planet, to gain insights into how the organization supported the Haran family while maintaining the organization’s ongoing mission in making a positive impact on agriculture in Ethiopia, Rwanda, and Tanzania.

Right away, all the core Fair Planet team rallied around the Haran family to provide support and help the family’s effort, led by Shoshan’s children Shaked and Yuval to work toward the release of all the hostages from the Haran-Avigdori family. The Fair Planet created WhatsApp groups, gathered volenteers from their network and worked to map out influential decision-makers around the globe to raise awareness, and work in all channels calling for their release. As Shoshan and other family members hold dual-citizenship, the Haran family HQ looked for international collaborations for their plight.

These included collaboration with European seed companies; engagement with German government officials, and producing a dedicated video with the Israeli Embassy in Ethiopia. International organizations such as the UN and the Union of Jewish Communities in Africa were also been approached to amplify the message. Importantly, those strong relationships that Fair Planet maintains with local authorities, farmers, communities, and universities in the countries in which they operate were a crucial part of their campaign to set Shoshan free from Hamas captivity.

Alongside their work with the Haran family, Fair Planet’s commitment to their mission remained unwavering. Dr. Haberfeld mentioned an eagerness to start a project in Nigeria during a meeting with the Nigerian ambassador. Despite the challenges of the “Iron Swords” war, Fair Planet continued its activities, emphasizing that halting work completely would not align with Dr. Shoshan Haran's dedication to the cause. When we spoke, Dr Haberfled smiled warmly and said that in this regard “If Shoshan came back to see that we stopped everything to help her, it wouldn’t be good”, and adds “I want to be able to tell her when she’s back – we did the work”.

Thankfully the organization has received support from seed companies and donors in the UK, Germany, Switzerland, and the USA. However, much like other Israeli international development organizations, Dr. Haberfeld highlighted the challenges faced, particularly in recruiting volunteers amid the ongoing conflict in Israel. Also, safety concerns for volunteers prompted a thorough examination, affirming the feasibility of continuing ground operations in all countries.

In the spirit of solidarity, Dr. Haberfeld calls to the community to help find new ways to reach potential volunteers for the organization’s missions if Africa. They need individuals willing to commit to extended periods of physical work, training farmers in the countries they operate. More so, they seek volunteers motivated by the soul drive to contribute, emphasizing the transformative impact these experiences have had on passed volunteers, some completely shifting their studies to focus on agriculture.

In these challenging times, Fair Planet remains a beacon of hope. Dr. Haberfeld acknowledges the complexities faced by the organization but expresses gratitude for the work they are able to do, and the positive and impactful change they are able to bring to African communities through Shoshan Haran’s vision of alleviating world hunger.


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