Learn About Israel
Vancouver Hillel is proud to offer superb, extensive resources on every subject relating to Israel. If you are looking for a balanced approach to the day’s news, researching a paper, proving a bet or just curious about Israel, here is the place to start.
Volunteer in Israel
If you want to volunteer in Israel, Vancouver Hillel can help! Let us connect you with opportunities to enrich your mind and spirit. Here are a few ways you can help yourself, help Israel, and help the world.
Amirim provides structure as well as the freedom to experience Israel on your own. Participants live as a community in rented apartments in Holon and Bat Yam, near the beach and minutes from Tel Aviv. The program includes volunteer placement in social change organizations in and around Tel Aviv, weekly trips around Israel, evening cultural and educational programs, and a three-day hike. Volunteering takes place four days a week, in the morning or afternoons, which leaves ample free time each day and over the weekend.
Eco-Israel, the international program of Hava & Adam Eco-Educational Farm located halfway between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, is a five-month program that allows students to explore how ecology, Judaism and Israel blend together in a working model of self-sustaining ecological community.
Firefighters for Israel
This program offers young adults an opportunity to explore Israel, while making a meaningful contribution to the country. The program begins with a three-day opening seminar and training course in English run by The Israeli Fire and Rescue Commission. Following the seminar, participants are placed in local firefighter stations throughout Israel, where they work as volunteer firefighters alongside Israeli volunteers and staff. A guided tour of Israel is also included. The program, including the training course and the volunteer period, spans one month and is offered several times a year. Contact Vancouver Hillel’s shaliach (Israel emissary) for details.
Israel Government Fellows Program (IGF)
The Israel Government Fellows Program (IGF) is a Menachem Begin Heritage Center initiative in affiliation with MASA. The program is endorsed by the Office of the Prime Minister in Israel and offers outstanding and highly motivated young Jewish leaders an experience at the heart of the Israeli government. Alongside internships in government offices, the program provides educational seminars, Hebrew language instruction and tours around the country. It is the only existing program of its kind for non-Israelis and is available for young Jews aged 22-30 with at least a first degree.
Kibbutz Program Centre
The Kibbutz Program Center offers a variety of programs and opportunities in Israel to young people in Canada and the United States. Some programs are sponsored by the kibbutz movement as a whole, some are run by individual kibbutzim, and some by non-kibbutz organizations. Programs focus on Hebrew language education and on experiencing the unique society that is kibbutz. The Centre also has opportunities for volunteers, students, and interested participants to take part in environmental/green, peace and co-existence projects and in social activism within Israel.
It is estimated that one in four Israelis lives below the poverty line, struggling to meet their daily needs. Livnot volunteers assist Israeli organizations in such projects as soup kitchens, packing and delivering food packages, and clothing distribution.
Magen David Adom Ambulance Volunteer Program
The program begins with an eight day first-aid training course in English run by Magen David Adom. During this week participants learn basic anatomy and physiology, CPR, trauma, injuries, shock management, emergency management of acute illnesses and much more. Following the successful completion of the training course, participants are placed in MDA stations all over Israel, where they work as ambulance volunteers side by side with Israeli volunteers and staff. The program, including the training course and the volunteer period runs for a period of 6-8 weeks and is offered several times a year. On completion of the program, participants receive certification as “Certified First Responders” from Magen David Adom. Contact Vancouver Hillel’s shaliach (Israel emissary) for details.
In 1948, approximately 3,500 overseas volunteers came from 43 countries to defend the nascent State of Israel during its struggle for survival and independence. They were known as Machal. Most were World War II veterans whose military experience and skills were of decisive importance in helping to shape the newly emerging Israel Defence Forces. Today, this tradition continues with Mahal2000, a program enabling young overseas Jews to volunteer for service in the Israel Defence Forces, followed by a commitment to Jewish community service in their country of origin.
Marva is a program for those interested in experiencing, in some way, what it is like in the Israeli Army. Marva participants stay on army bases, learn about the Israeli Army, learn how to use weapons, go on marches and hikes, and generally complete something akin to basic training. The program is conducted in Hebrew, and so is a good way to become more familiar with the language. Participants need to be physically fit.
In addition to providing connections to and funding for post-secondary study opportunities in Israel, MASA also offers volunteer opportunities.
OTZMA is a 10-month program that offers Jewish adults ages 20-26 (college graduates preferred) an opportunity to live and volunteer in Israel in a variety of settings.
Volunteer for Israel – Sarel
Spend two or three weeks living and working alongside Israelis at an army base or in a hospital. Volunteers for Israel get an insider’s view of the culture and lifestyle of Israel. In addition to work assignments, cultural and educational programs are offered. One or two excursions will also be included, situation permitting.
WUJS Israel Hadassah
WUJS Israel Hadassah provides the ultimate Israel Experience for young Jewish adults from around the world. Newly based in the simultaneously ancient, historic and modern cities of Jerusalem and Tel-Aviv, WUJS Israel Hadassah provides you with the opportunity to either intern in one of Israel’s leading companies or organizations, study the foundations of Judaism and Zionism or develop your artistic talent all within a dynamic, safe environment.
Move to Israel
The Jewish Agency for Israel offers assistance for those who choose to make Israel their home.