She employs over 100 workers in her business, she serves as a director and as a council member in her hometown Shoham- and in between she continues to draw other women to success together with Jasmine’s CEO, Kiram Baloum. Suzi Bar, IZUN’s first cycle graduate: “Thanks to the tools I learned through Jasmine I know now that I can cross endless boundaries”
Jasmine, the not-for-profit organization headed and founded by Kiram Baloum, has made it its goal to create a female leadership that draws other women up towards success. One of these women, comprising the leadership cadre created by the NGO, is Suzi Bar, who joined Jasmine’s first ‘IZUN’ program and became a success story of an independent woman, holding an impressive career who works towards Jasmine’s goal to promote other women who wish to found a business of their own.
Bar (49), married plus 3, started her journey at the age of 25, when she opened a company that provides clean rooms for factories, commercial centers, and logistic centers plus perishable equipment for clean rooms named “Kzat Aheret ltd” (A Little Different). Today, Her company employs 100 employees and is developing a new department specializing in contamination control. The beginning, though, was not easy: “I started as an SME owner, I didn’t always understand what the accountant said, the insurance was like speaking Chinese, and I realized I must learn. We all love to think we know everything, yet I didn’t always know what I was doing and understood that I must learn and listen to advice- which is an ability in and of itself.”
After experiencing professional solitude she arrived at Jasmine and joined the IZUN program – a unique and exclusive program for training women for director and other key positions in the market, within which she received a major push forward: “One of the things most difficult for me as a woman and business owner is being alone. People around me did not understand the challenges that a woman small business owner faces. From that place I searched for ways to develop and I found Jasmine’s IZUN program. The program provides a diverse toolbox and opened the door for me to the world I was looking for. Through the IZUN meetings I met other women dealing with similar challenges, for the first time, and I realized I have a lot to offer from my experience as a business owner and manager. I found a place where I could receive and give equally.
“Thanks to the IZUN toolbox”, Bar continues, “I signed up for academic studies and I am soon finishing my bachelor’s degree. During the course many collaborations were developed that produced income, new ideas, and pushed us upwards. Without these meetings, all this would not happen. The toolbox I acquired helped me understand that I lack knowledge and that I need to obtain it. I am finishing a degree in public policy and local government out of the understanding and the inner knowledge that I can break through any boundary”.
Alongside running her business, Bar presides as a director of the Chamber of Commerce in Jerusalem, and as a member of the local council in Shoham, the head of “Shoam Betnufa” party, head of the opposition, and the successful blog owner “Public Mission the Blog”.
Bar expresses much gratitude and appreciation: “Kiram spoke with me often, supported me and held my hand through the entire journey. That is what makes the difference for me from other organizations supporting women.”
To the question how Jasmine affects her work today and how it helps other women, Bar answers: “I met up with the gender difficulties at Jasmine and I understood that there needs to be advancement and a strong women representation in all the decision making tables and in all the arenas, as well as in the municipal arena where I am active.” Today she spreads Jasmine’s agenda in this area as well and provides free initial business consulting to women in Shoham, her hometown, that want to open a business. “It has happened that a woman who wants to open a business approached me and I showed her there was no viability to her business plan and how that can even cost her her home. Thanks to this, she opened a smaller business and today she has grown and is advancing well in business”. Bar gives women who are starting off a tip: “Connect to a supportive involved group, create a network for advice and conversation, which is what helps us see things differently, promotes us and protects us”.
Kiram Baloum: “Building a female financial leadership foundation”
One of Kiram Baloum’ s, Jasmine’s CEO and Founder, goals is not only to push women forward to financial success, thus creating a strong female leadership, but also to support them onwards to drawing more and more women to join the leadership cadre that the organization is building.
Kiram Baloum, founder and CEO of Jasmine: “We are creating a female leadership core in all areas of influence together with the programs’ graduates and with leading women in the financial market, who are all working together to draw up more and more women. Suzi Bar is an example of a Jasmine graduate that has become a success story and today works to help other women to join the financial women’s leadership cadre. In the end, the goal is to create change, and change is brought about by action- so it is with great pride that we witness the results.”
Jasmine has helped and supported over 11,000 women until now, in the aim of strengthening women’s financial strength throughout all populations and sectors in Israel. Following the organizations success, Jasmine enjoys overwhelming support from leading financial companies and businesses in the Israeli market, who are joining the vision and work, creating together an impactful female financial force in the Israeli society and financial arena.