1998: Working quietly under the name “Irgun Siddur Chovot” (Arranging Debt Repayment), Mesila began its operations. Founded by Rabbi Shmuli Margulies, the organization offered customized loans in conjunction with ongoing counseling to clients who had a clear, comprehensive exit strategy.
Years of work with hundreds of financially struggling people demonstrated that counseling them to adopt financially responsible lifestyles is far more effective than any loan or grant in alleviating the problems of poverty and debt. Based on this principle, Mesila developed a highly successful method of combating the root causes of poverty and debt.
2005: “Irgun Siddur Chovos” officially became Mesila and assumed a new, dramatic mandate: changing public attitudes towards financial responsibility.
2006: Mesila opened its business counseling division to equip business owners with the necessary skills to rehabilitate their businesses and bring them up to speed with current business practices and trends.
Recognizing the unique role women play in economics, N’shei Meslila (Women’s Mesila) was established to educate and empower women to take an active role in financial management. Workshops and seminars were created especially by women, for women.
2007: Mesila’s Family Division publishes a comprehensive guidebook used to instruct counselors in its specialized counselor training program. It explains clearly the guiding principles of Mesila as well as details its unique, systematic approach to counseling families towards financial independence.
2009: Mesila goes international.
Thanks to our extensive Israel-based research and development, our methodology, philosophy and materials have touched the lives of thousands. Over the years, Mesila witnessed a surge in international demand for our “Made in Israel” services, and the resultant growth. Community activists approached us with the pressing need for Mesila’s help within their communities abroad. In 2009, Mesila went international, establishing 2 branches in the U.S.: in Baltimore Maryland and Lakewood, New Jersey. Our professional staff from Mesila Israel trained voluntary staff from these communities, with local staff shadowing our professionals as they counsel.
2010: Mesila’s Education initiative launched.
Another important lesson learned in the process of counseling, was that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. On that foundation, Mesila’s education division began.
Mesila sought to reach the youth to change their attitudes to money, earning and management, before they started families of their own. For that purpose, a curriculum was developed created especially for seminary students who are at that age and stage, and in 2010 the seminary education program was launched in English and Hebrew speaking seminaries in Israel.
2011: High School program is launched internationally. Seminary program expands internationally.
Mesila branch opens in Montreal
2012: Mesila branches open in Monsey and London
2013: Mesila’s education initiative expands to high schools and yeshivas across Israel.
Junior High School program is introduced in the US.
Mesila branches open in Manchester and Brooklyn
2014: Mesila’s Junior High School program is introduced in Israel.
Income Enhancement Program launched.
English Language Division (Israel) launched.