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I.D.F volunteering


I.D.F. volunteering

I.D.F. together with other organizations offer Jews and non-Jews around the world to join different volunteering programs in the army.

In cases when a citizen cannot be normally drafted by the law (old age, served as a soldier in a different country, severe health problems, handicaps, autism, etc.), the person could enroll as volunteer in places where his knowledge can be used or in cases there is a base that accepts volunteer service from one day per week up to a full 24/7 service upon person abilities and wishes.

Overseas volunteering

I.D.F. volunteering programs for non-immigrating foreign volunteers:

Sar-El Volunteers for Israel (IDF Bases)

- Sar-El or "Service to Israel" is a volunteer program of the I.D.F., which accepts every year about 5,000 volunteers from overseas to serve for two or three weeks with the IDF. The job is mainly in the logistical, maintaining, catering, supply and medical services. This is a great help for the army, as it helps not only to save money, but also to spare reserve soldiers from being called up. The requirements for volunteers are the following: at least 17 years old (or 15 if accompanied by a parent) and healthy. The job is neither paid and nor armed. The volunteers wear the IDF work uniforms with Sar-El epaulettes, but they are not considered as soldiers. This service usually does not conflict with the military laws of the volunteers' home countries. Learn More


- The program targets young non-Israeli Jews and consists typically of 14.5–18 months of IDF service, including a lengthy training for those in combat units or (for 18 months) one month of non-combat training and additional two months of learning Hebrew after enlisting, if necessary. Volunteering for longer service is possible. There are two additional subcategories of Mahal, both geared solely for religious men: Mahal Nahal Haredi (16 months), and Mahal Hesder, which combines yeshiva study of 6.5 months with IDF service of 14.5 months, for a total of 21 months. Similar IDF programs exist for Israeli overseas residents. To be accepted as a Mahal Volunteer, one must be of Jewish descent (at least one Jewish grandparent)... Learn More

Garin Mahal

- Garin Mahal (formerly Aish Machal) was established in May, 2010 in cooperation with Israel's Ministry of Defense. Garin Mahal is a Pre - Military Educational Program uniquely designed to assist lone soldiers throughout their IDF service. To date, Garin Mahal has helped over 200 volunteers from America, Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, England and South Africa. Once discharged, Garin Mahal participants return to their homes overseas, where they serve a vital role as ambassadors to Israel both on campus and within their own communities... Learn More

Garin Tzabar

- The program run by the Friends of the Israel Scouts, Inc. -Tzofim was founded in 1991. Garin, a Hebrew word for “core” or “seed”, is a term used in Israel for a group of soldiers who choose to experience their army service together as a social unit of mutual support and camaraderie. The members of Garin Tzabar, a group formed for Diaspora Jews and sons od Israelis who choose to move to Israel and serve in the IDF, are adopted by the Israel Scouts and placed in a hosting kibbutz that quickly becomes their home away from home throughout the duration of their army service. The program is largely funded by the Ministry of Immigrant Absorption, who has been a partner in this endeavor since its inception. Learn More


- Marva is an IDF program that allows young Jews to learn and experience the basics of IDF and Israeli life. The program lasts between seven to eight weeks and each week, students are stationed at a different base. This program is open to participants from all over the world. The program is conducted in simple Hebrew, allowing for significant improvement of Hebrew skills. Activities range from camp craft, navigation, and topography to hikes, lectures, seminars and walking tours, participation in training exercises, and being in the field. Emphasis is placed on Israel’s security situation during lectures on specific social and political issues. Applicants should be Jewish tourists between the ages of 18-28...‏ Learn More

Volunteers For Israel

- The mission of Volunteers For Israel is to connect Americans to Israel through volunteer service. VFI achieve this goal by partnering with military and civilian organizations that enable volunteers to work side-by-side with Israelis. VFI promote solidarity and goodwill among Israelis, American Jews, and other friends of Israel...

Learn More

Pre-Army Mechinot

Religious pre-army Mechina
A religious Mechina is intended for graduates of a Yeshiva high school, and prepares them for their service in the Israel Defense Forces. Focus is placed on preparing them for the encounter with secular society in the army by studying Jewish thought, beliefs and outlooks. Students also prepare physically for their service period and receive leadership training from active-duty officers.
Secular pre-army Mechina
A Secular Mechina focuses on preparing high school graduates for citizenship as well as IDF service. The program of studies covers leadership, principles and practice of democracy, volunteer service to the community, ideological and individual identity, Zionism, Jewish history and heritage, philosophy, and more. While "secular" in matters of religious observance, the program of study includes Judaism with a focus on ethics and tradition.
The first secular Mechina was Nahshon, founded in 1997 in Nili - in the West Bank.
Joint religious and secular pre-army Mechina
The joint religious and secular Mechinot were founded to help bridge the widening gaps in Israeli society. As such, they focus on teaching a range of subjects to a mixed student body, including Zionism, leadership, Judaism, political science, philosophy, alongside intensive community and societal involvement and volunteering.

Below is a list of all Pre-army Mechinot:

Name of Mechina Location Phone Director Email
Elisha Halamish - Neve Tzuf
D.N. Modiin 71945
Fax: 08-9241053
Rabbi Yitzchak Nissim m_elisha@017.net.il
Arzei HaLevanon Ma'ale Ephraim, POB 1060, Jordan Valley 02-9409097
Fax: 02-9409123
Rabbi Ze'ev Sharon arzey@netvision.net.il
Beit Yatir Beit Yatir, D.N. Har Hebron, 90402 02-9964933
Fax: 02-9964781
Rabbi Moshe Hagar Website: http://www.yatir.org
Bnei David Eli, D.N. Efraim, 44828 02-9942240
Fax: 02-9943256
Rabbi Yigal Levenstein bd@bneidavid.org
Website: http://www.bneidavid.org/
Eretz HaTzvi Peduel, D.N. Modiin, 71940 03-9332856
Fax: 03-9336402
Rabbi Meir Katz
Amishai - 052-3291821
Chemdat Yehuda Chemdat, Mobile Post Mizrach Binyamin 10990 02-9944602/5, 02-9941818
Fax: 02-9944603
Rabbi Yinon Madar info@chemdat.org.il
Website: http://www.chemdat.org.il/
Yemin Orde Hazor HaGlilit, POB 165, 10300 04-6860806
Fax: 04-6800346
Eyal Eldar mechina@yeminorde.co.il
Carmey Hayil Bet Rimon, Mobile Post HaMovil, 17950 04-6509654
Fax: 04-6509654
Rabbi Ran Ben-Moshe segiby@yahoo.com
Website: http://www.carmey.co.il
Magen Shaul Nokdim, Mobile Post North Yehuda, 90916 02-9965150
Fax: 02-9605547
Rabbi Itamar Cohen
Elad - 0524 639 069
Website: http://www.mnokdim.org
Amit Rosh Pina POB 57, Rosh Pina, 12000 04-6930582
Fax: 04-6930574
Rabbi Abraham Davidovitch
Ateret Cohanim 139 Hagai Street, Old City,
POB 1076, Jerusalem 91009
Fax: 02-6261528
Rabbi Netanel Harel Website: http://www.ateret.org.il
Leadership Yeshiva Academy Moshav Avnei Eitan,
Golan Heights, 12925
Fax: 04-6600142
Rav Erez Levi
Alon Moreshet 0525-371206 info@lya.org.il
Website: http://www.lya.org.il
Keshet YehudaMoshav Keshet,
D.N. Golan Heights, 12410
Fax: 04-6963962
Rabbi Yaakov Feigenbaum
Shuki Kestenbaum - 0525-443621
MaskiotShadmot Mechola, Mobile Post Yizra’el 1093204-6581834/7
Fax: 04-6584543
Rabbi Shlomo Azualos
Katzrin POB 3585, Katzrin 1290004-6964235
Fax: 04-6964037
Rabbi Ya’ish Chanuna
Kiryat MalachiPOB 57, Kiryat Malachi08-8600024
Fax: 08-8600024
Rabbi Boaz Sherman
Website: http://www.mechina.org.il (Hebrew site)
Secular MechinotYaffo (Reform) 10  Wasserman Street, Yaffo03-6823284
Fax: 03-6810078
Rav Arale Fox
Minsharim KaluMa’agan Micha’el, Mobile Post Menashe 3780504-6399655
Fax: 04-6293857
Mr. Muki Betzer
NachshonKibbutz Netiv Ha’lamed Heh, Mobile Post Ha’ela Valley 9985502-9900235
Fax: 02-9922028
Mr. Ze’evik Nativ
Website: http://nahshonna.tripod.com/
AderetMoshav Aderet 36, Mobile Post Ha’ela 9985002-9920080
Fax: 02-9920080
Dani Fradkinaderetm@netvision.net.il
MeitzarKibbutz Meitzar, Mobile Post Golan Heights 04-6763760
Fax: 04-6763762
Rabbi Avi Ze’ira Kdz2@bezeqint.net
Rabin – OranimOranim, Mobile Post Tivon 3600604-9838753, ext. 220/1
Fax: 04-9830232
Adv. Danny Zamir m_rabin@macam.ac.il
Website: http://www.oranim.ac.il
Mechinat HanegevMidreshet Ben Gurion, Sde Boker 8499008-6532701
Fax: 08-6532270
Mr. Gonen Reichergonen@boker.org.il
Website: http://www.boker.org.il
Ma’ayan BaruchKibbutz Ma’ayan Baruch, Mobile Post Upper Galilee 1222004-6954888
Fax: 04-6902006
Mr. Yossi Baruch, 0577-207971mehina@maayan-baruch.org.il
Website: http://www.maayan-baruch.com
Amichai Moshav Argaman, Mobile Post Arvot Hayarden 90692 02-9400161
Fax: 02-9409493
Mr. Matti Chai Ami-chai@012.net.il
Website: http://www.zionist.org.il/mecina/index.htm
Ein Prat (Co-ed) Kfar Adumim, D.N. East Binyamin, 90618 02-5905992/3/5
Fax: 02-5905994
Erez Eshel info@einprat.org
Website: http://www.einprat.org/
English site: http://www.einprat.org/indexeng.htm
Beit Yisrael Kibbutz Beit Yisrael, POB 11232, Gilo, Jerusalem 02-6760580
Fax: 02-6768412
Hoshea Friedman Ben-Shalom mbeitisrael@reut.org.il
Website: www.reut.org.il

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