2. Multi-Year Commitment: Pre and Post-Military Academy Programs
Whereas one of the goals of the Jewish Agency to Israel is educating the younger generation on Jewish and Zionist values, and strengthening Israel's vulnerable populations, especially in Priority Areas, and help integrate them into Israeli society;
Whereas the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (“the International Fellowship”) aims to create and operate social initiatives aimed to strengthen Israeli national and social resilience;
Whereas Pre and Post-Military Academy Programs serve as an educational framework, inter alia, for vulnerable populations through preparation of students for military service in the IDF and through education for social and civic involvement;
Whereas the Jewish Agency, together with the International Fellowship , decided to establish Pre and Post-Military Academy Programs designed to vulnerable populations in Israeli society that do not have today a significant part in pre-military preparatory programs,
Whereas next year it is planned to launch four pre-army preparatory programs and 3-5 post military programs;
Whereas the International Fellowship has agreed to participate in financing the preparatory programs, expressed a willingness to commit annual payments of 330 thousand US dollars for each of the three school years 2012/3-2014/5 dependent on the Jewish Agency providing matching funds;
Whereas the Jewish Agency wishes to make such a multi-year commitment;
Therefore be it resolved:
1. Approve annual budget of 330 thousand US dollars for three years Between the school years 2012/3-2014/5, for the Agency’s participation in financing the Pre/post-military preparatory programs.
2. The Finance Unit is authorized to deal in implementing the said decision, according to the agreement that will be signed with partners.
Approved by the Plenary
June 27, 2012
Explanatory notes - Pre and Post-Military Academy Programs
After examining the matter at a national level, it was decided to develop Preparatory Programs designed for unique target populations who today don’t take a significant part in the world of pre-military Preparatory Programs. These programs will enable the young population to deal with questions about their Jewish & Israeli identity, develop leadership abilities and personal responsibility, develop an awareness of what is happening in society and become active citizens in society. These frameworks will engage in preparation for military service with the intention to allow their alumni to take part in meaningful service in the army and facilitating social mobility in Israel and preparation for life after the army.
The Pre and Post-Military Academy Programs are consisted of four major clusters each of which will be designated a specific target audience:
The “Derech Eretz”Cluster: a half-year program that is designed for school graduates from the general population. Target audience is young people from social and geographical periphery, from regular schools, from youth villages and immigrants, which do not currently receive a significant educational preparatory program before their induction into the army.
The “ Jewish Worldwide Youth Academy Cluster - "Yachdav": a half-year designed for high-school graduates & young Jews from Israel and abroad and is designed for those who wish to experience joint study and activism with young Jews from different countries, focusing on questions and definitions of their personal and national identity, and the place of the State of Israel in their lives.
The Ethiopian Youth Academy Cluster: More than 80% of young people from the Ethiopian community want to serve in the army and make a significant contribution to the army during the service period. However, data from the Ministry of Defense and the Army indicate that 53% of that community ends up in prison during their military service and most of them drop out of the army or serve in roles that are less significant . This problematic statistic indicates the need to consider the processes which those young people undergo and the reasons behind the discrepancy between the percentage of recruitment and the success of their integration within the military. This Preparatory Program is directed to create a change in the ability of young people to integrate into the military community and society and realizing the enormous potential inherent in them.
The Youth Villages Alumni and other Residential (non-family) Frameworks Preparatory Cluster: Many of the alumni of youth villages and residential frameworks do not attain a significant service in the army, and they are not able to use the "second chance" given to them by military service. The preparatory program for youth village graduates is designed to develop and prepare them for meaningful military service and to help them become more independent and developed adults.
The Military Preparatory Program cost ranges from 250 to 330 thousand dollars for six months, for 50 youth in an academy. The Jewish Agency and the International Fellowship do not support the full amount of the Programs operation costs and not even the majority of its cost. Each program raises part of the amount on its own through participation fees and donations. Next year it is planned to launch four pre-army preparatory programs and 3-5 post military preparatory programs.
After several meetings with the International Fellowship, we have agreed to jointly launch a program for a chain of academies. Both parties wish to commit an annual sum of 330 thousand US dollars for three years. A joint management committee will be formed headed by a leading public figure in Israel. The program will be advised by a professional committee.