The number of youth at risk constitutes one of Israel’s most serious social problems.
Tens of thousands of youth have been removed from their homes due to imminent danger. Youth villages provide a normative, residential environment where they can receive the appropriate care to heal and flourish.
What began as a rescue operation to save Jewish youth from Nazi Germany has evolved into a highly effective network that is transforming the lives.
During its decades of activity, Youth Villages have served over 300,000 children and youth, including many new immigrants from the former Soviet Union (FSU) and Ethiopia. Youth Villages are currently home to around 800 children.
The social and educational intervention provided at Youth Villages enables students to cope with integration difficulties, break the cycle of poverty and become contributing members of Israeli society.
During their time at a Youth Village, students receive a full secondary school education, nutritional meals, psychological and medical treatment and a warm, supportive environment.
Youth Villages employ a multi-pronged approach to the academic and social rehabilitation of youth at risk, which includes:
- A remedial junior high school program to close educational gaps and help mainstream youth transition into normative high school frameworks
- Individually tailored interventions and intensive tutoring
- Therapeutic and psychological counselling
- Extra-curricular activities that maximise and reinforce positive behavioural models, such as sports, art and animal care
Over 70% of Youth Village graduates complete their studies with a full or partial matriculation certificate and up to 95% are accepted to the Israel Defence Forces. Youth Villages also work closely with students’ families and community support systems, with the aim of integrating the students back into their home communities. Youth Villages are ensuring that thousands of marginalised youth receive the support they need to ultimately take their place in Israeli society.
Today, new immigrants from the FSU and Ethiopia account for more than 70% of the student population at Youth Villages. The rest are Israeli-born youth whose social integration has been unsuccessful thus far.
This project is in partnership with The Jewish Agency for Israel, the Government of Israel and local authorities.
locations - Kiryat Yearim, Hadassah Neurim, Ben Yakir and Ramat
youth are supported annually
Improving rates of matriculation and IDF enlistment for youth at risk