Founder/Entrepreneur: Revital Makis
City: Ofakim, Be’er Sheva
Field: Learning Center for Underprivileged Children
Date Founded: 2015
Ayelet Center- Learning in the Periphery at Affordable Prices
The Ayellet Learning Center was founded by Revital Makis, a mother of three living in Ofakim, close to the Gaza border. It’s a low-income area with a weak educational system. Revital was unhappy with the public education her children received, and was frustrated with the high cost of private tutoring. She realized many of her friends and neighbors suffered the same problem. She thought about opening a learning center that would tutor students in small groups. This would keep the quality of teaching high, but the cost low.
Revital participated in Eretz-Ir’s Accelerator for Social Businesses in 2015, where she was able to transform her idea into a flourishing business. She learned how to build a business model, and organized meetings with key players in Ofakim’s educational system- including the mayor. Within 2 months of opening her business, Revital was able to pay herself a salary. The Center offers classes in small groups and at subsidized prices for children and youth from disadvantaged neighborhoods. The classes range from kindergarten to junior high and teach subjects including math, Hebrew, English, and more.
Revital has given gainful employment to 12 local teachers and taught more than 200 students. The Department of Education now refers struggling students to Revital, who says that the best part of her business is that she knows she is creating a real impact. The average grade of a student taking her course is 69 before the course, and 87 afterwards!
Revital is a shining example of the huge affect local residents can have on their community through a social business.