Project of the Month

These programs allow talented underprivileged teenagers to fulfill their potential by providing them with a challenging program of enrichment and leadership training at the Ruppin Institute of Marine Science. Talented 7th graders from all backgrounds of Israeli society in the lower socio-economic levels are chosen - programs run for 2 years.


Description of the Project : 

Ethiopian teenagers growing up in Israel today face a real identity crisis. They do not feel ‎Israeli, they do not feel Ethiopian, and as a result they tend to be ambivalent towards both cultures. ‎

We aim to create a sense of belonging and pride, both in their Israeli home and in their Ethiopian heritage, and to ‎build self-confidence and leadership skills. ‎

How the Project Works : 

Participants are chosen from the many applicants. An eight-month course of weekly ‎meetings teaches leadership skills, patriotism, Zionism, pride in their heritage and hope for ‎the future.  

The course culminates with a one week heritage trip to Ethiopia where they visit the villages their ‎parents came from, experience the rural life they had led, and understand the very difficult route their parents took walking ‎through Sudan to reach the holy Jerusalem.

They will also be able to meet family members who may still be there and whom they have never known.

The experience gives these teenagers an insight ‎into their heritage, a sense of pride in the centuries of Judaism practiced in Ethiopia, a new regard ‎for their parents’ difficult paths and a new feeling of belonging not to the past, but to Israel and the ‎present.‎

About the Participants : 

15 teenagers, specially chosen (many of whom were pupils in ESRA’s Students Build a Community ‎Projects), 5 group leaders and escorts for the trip to Ethiopia.‎
The Partners : 

The Umbrella Organisation of Community Centers
The Hefzibah and Neot Ganim Community Centers

Additional Information : 

If you would like to help fund, or be involved in any way, to help ensure the continued operation of this
worthy project, please contact:  Herzliya Office 09 9508371 or email ?subject=Journey%20To%20Identity%20Project"> 

Or just click on the link to make an online donation

The Costs : 

Required funding for the trip to Ethiopia:  NIS 90,000‎
Weekly activities:‎            ‎                     NIS 12,500‎

The pupils work during the summer holidays and each pay NIS 2,500 = NIS 37,500‎
The Community Centers Organization  ‎                ‎                               NIS 30,000‎
ESRA Funding                                                                            ‎      NIS 35,000‎