Army Service Programs
Mahal -- Mahal helps young Jewish men (ages 18-23) and women (ages 18-20) from all over the world volunteer and enlist in the IDF. Lone soldiers who enlist through Mahal are obligated by the IDF to serve 14 months, or 18 months if he or she has to do a 3- month IDF ulpan. You cannot make Aliyah or have made Aliyah and enlist through Mahal. Mahal helps all overseas residents in Israel eligible for IDF enlistment, including non-Israeli tourists, volunteers and students, Israeli citizens residing overseas, former Israelis residing overseas, children of former Israelis, non-Israelis with an Israeli parent, non-Israelis with parents living in Israel etc. Through Mahal, you will usually enlist in the IDF two months after your arrival in Israel where you will complete all the necessary pre-army testing and procedures. For more information, please visit their award winning website.
Garin Tzabar -- Garin Tzabar offers the opportunity for young Jews, some the children of Israelis, to move to Israel as a group (garin) and join the army. The Garin (meaning seed, refers to the group) makes aliyah together, lives together on a kibbutz and individually serves in the army. Before coming to Israel, the Garin meets together for 5 seminars (in Hebrew) throughout the year to discuss personal dilemmas and the decision of joining the army. Garin participants will learn about their duties in the army, their rights as citizens of Israel and theywill create important support relationships with peers who will share this experience. Basic Hebrew knowledge is necessary to join Garin Tzabar.
Mahal Hesder -- Mahal Hesder helps religious students from abroad enlist in the IDF into religious units. These lone soldiers learn in a Hesder Yeshiva for 6.5 months, and then serve in regular Hesder units for 14 months, totaling 21 months. For details, see the Mahal website.
Aish Mahal Gap Year Program -- This is a track that is tailor-made for high school graduates and college students who love Israel and want to pursue their dream of serving in the Israeli army and are committed to not delaying their college studies beyond one academic year. Aish Machal enlistees have the option of serving in units comprised of only religious soldiers or in integrated units together with secular soldiers. Aish Machal will serve as an adoptive family to the Machal soldiers, helping to support their physical, emotional and spiritual needs.
Civilian Volunteer Army Programs
These two programs allow non-Israelis from around the world to experience what service in the IDF is like for a short period of time.
Marva -- 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. A working knowledge of Hebrew is required (must complete ulpan level aleph). Marva is a physically and mentally demanding program. Applicants are expected to be in excellent physical health and must be highly motivated. It is necessary to undergo a personal interview prior to acceptance.
Sar-El -– Sar-El is a short-term three-week volunteer program that enables participants to volunteer and live with Israelis and volunteers from all over the world on army bases in Israel. Volunteers will work alongside or under the direction of Israeli soldiers and perform duties such as packing food rations or medical kits, cleaning tanks, painting helmets, radio repairs, gas mask refurbishment, changing spare parts, gardening, or cleaning. Volunteers live on the army in barracks (4-8 per room) during the week and are free on weekends (Friday & Saturday)for touring Israel. In the evenings, there are various activities and educational presentations on such topics as the Hebrew language, Israel's history, Jewish holidays and traditions, and social and political issues in Israel.
|Army Courses for Olim||Israeli Enlistment Tracks||Religious Female Programs||Atuda/Atudat Olim|