Analysis of World Vision Israel
World Vision Israel (WV-IL) was registered with the Israeli Registrar of Non-Profits (R.A. 580110641) in 1988. According to filings with the Registrar, income is provided entirely by World Vision International and “local donations.” According to the organization’s financial report, revenue in 2014 amounted to $16.3 million.
Correspondence between the Registrar and World Vision IL (available on file with NGO Monitor) reveals that for many years, the NGO failed to comply with information requests regarding financial records and audits relating to the use of its funds. It is unknown whether the NGO presented the missing documents to the Registrar.
References to and reports on World Vision Jerusalem, West Bank and Gaza (WV-JWG) are available on the internet. WV-JWG, which apparently overlaps to some degree with World Vision -IL, does not exist as a separate financial and legal entity. According to documents submitted to the Registrar, WV-IL claims that “it began working in Jerusalem in response to the Palestinian population needs that as a result of the Israeli occupation the development of infrastructure were severely lacking. Today, World Vision Jerusalem includes 56 projects of community development that help to 150,000 people living in the Gaza Strip and Israel.”
Several senior officials in the World Vision Israeli entity (information taken from documents provided by the Registrar) have ties to NGOs promoting BDS activities and demonization of Israel:
- Sami Khoury, listed as the financial manager in the latest available documentation, is a member of Sabeel’s General Assembly. Sabeel is a leader of church divestment campaigns, utilizing overtly antisemitic language to demonize Israel.
- Raffoul Rofa, a board member since 2008 and chair since 2009, is also the director of the Society of St.Yves, a highly politicized Catholic NGO that is among the leaders of demonization campaigns, through allegations of “discriminatory policies” and “breach[ing] international law.” Founder Michel Sabbah authored (with Naim Ateek of Sabeel and Atallah Hanna) the 2009 Kairos Palestine document, which promotes BDS in chuches, compares Israel with the South African apartheid regime, and denies the Jewish historical connection to Israel.
- Anton Asfar is a member of the WV-IL board of directors, and serves on the board of directors of St. Yves.
There are major inconsistencies regarding the budget of World Vision IL, and the claims in the context of the Hamas aid diversion case. World Vision Australia CEO Tim Costello contends that the total budget for Gaza operations was only $22.5 million over the past decade, in stark contrast with the $16.3 million annual budget reported in 2014 by the Israeli entity, as well as the Israeli government allegation that over $50 million dollars was diverted from the Gaza budget over ten years. (World Vision Australia is one of the major funders for WV operations in Gaza.)
According to NGO Monitor research, from 2004-2015, the World Vision JWG budget was $133 million. The amount designated for operations in Gaza is unclear.