Orly Heiblum grew up in Mexico City and chose to study hotel management. After working in hospitality for a year, she decided to pursue a different direction for her career. Luckily, around that time her then-boyfriend (now husband) was sent to do his national service in San Cristóbal de las Casas, a small town in the southern state of Chiapas. While living there, Orly found her calling – the social sector. She got involved with two local non-profit organizations that did community work. At the same time, she and her husband founded an organization, Desde los Altos, that provided health-related services to people living under the poverty line.
After moving back to Mexico City, Orly found work with Filantrofilia, an organization that helps non-profits monitor, evaluate, and improve their operations, while maximizing their impact. A few years later, Orly and her husband decided to make aliya, so he could continue his surgical training at Hadassah.
Orly began seeking academic opportunities in Israel. When she found Glocal, the Hebrew University’s International Development master’s program, she knew she’d found what she was looking for.
"Glocal was a perfect fit for my experience and interests, and it was even in Jerusalem! My two favorite aspects of the program were the academics, which gave me a deep understanding of the world of development work; and social, I met inspiring people who are doing amazing things around the world."
For her internship, Orly volunteered with Kuchinate, a collective of African asylum-seekers in Tel Aviv. Her role included helping the NGO make their processes more organized and professional. She also organized events and taught workshops to the women, with an emphasis on management skills.
"I really enjoy the field of evaluation. By helping organizations adapt their work to meet best practices, NGOs are able to achieve more – more efficiently. These are powerful tools, and I know that I can make the social sector more professional."