Israel & Overseas Funded Programs


The Federation has three overseas partners – Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI), American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC), and World ORT. Programs of these organizations are funded through the Federation’s Annual Campaign and its Israel & Overseas allocation.


Jewish Agency for Israel Annual Campaign-funded programs


Ben Yakir Youth Village

The religious Ben Yakir Youth Village, located at Kfar Haroeh, was founded by the Youth Aliyah Department of the Jewish Agency in 1974. The village is designed for junior high and high school youth and provides a home for 122 at risk students. The majority of the youth are from the Ethiopian community and the others are Israeli-born. The village provides the students with an inclusive offering of formal education, enrichment activities, Jewish heritage, a comprehensive therapeutic facility and a boarding school framework that provides for all their needs.

The students at the village enjoy a wide range of extra-curricular enrichment activities, a therapeutic facility that incorporates a range of therapies and social treatment, a large animal corner which they manage and operate. The students’ day-to-day routine focuses on empowerment, Jewish tradition, values and individual excellence in different areas.

Pre-Attidim program

Atid is the Hebrew word for future, and Atidim (Futures) is the name of a breakthrough project designed to secure the future of Israel by enabling highly-talented youth in disadvantaged areas to realize their full academic potential.

Atidim offers a broad range of age-specific programs - beginning with a curriculum for students in high schools (Pre-Atidim), through the universities and ending with their placement in meaningful positions in the Israeli industry or public administration. Many of the students currently enrolled in different phases of Atidim are new immigrants, and the program is essential in helping them integrate into Israeli society.

Nearly 12,000 high-school pupils attend the Atidim program, which takes place in over 60 localities.

Children of the Dream (Hapolim Soccer Program)

Soccer is the most popular sport in Israel. Sporting events are known to serve as bonding elements among people from all sectors of society. Children of the Dream utilizes soccer as a venue to help participants bond with a better future by improving relations between participants of different cultures, improving scholastic achievement and by elevating participants' personal self-esteem. Participation in mandatory Children of the Dream tutoring coupled with discipline obtained through participation in the program's structured sports environment has proven to be most effective in reversing delinquent behavior and improving children's scholastic achievements.

The basic idea is very simple. Participating children play soccer, receive a uniform, work with a coach and are invited to regional tournaments and to home games of the professional Hapoel Tel Aviv team. In return, they are required to come to educational enrichment classes, two days a week. The beauty is - this simple idea works!

Children of the Dream is implemented by the Hapoel Keter Tel Aviv Soccer Team. What started as a dream of the team's owners a decade ago, today impacts over 23,000 children and youth annually. One clear mark of the program's success is the fact that hundreds of program graduates rejoin the program as volunteer tutors, counselors and coaches.

The Jewish Agency for Israel is working with the Hapoel Keter Tel Aviv group to ensure implementation of Children of the Dream. New immigrants and participants of the Jewish Agency for Israel's breakthrough Youth Futures program (described below) are some of the country's most disadvantaged children. Implementing Children of the Dream for these populations will provide empowerment where it is most needed. Please join us in ensuring these children's ability to bond with a positive future.

NATIV for Lone Soldiers

NATIV is a comprehensive educational program that reinforces new immigrant soldiers' feelings of connection to Israel and to their Jewish cultural heritage. The program is offered to immigrant soldiers who have been in Israel for ten years or less, who feel disconnected with their roots and wish to learn more about Judaism, Zionism, Israeli culture, and history.

For those soldiers who are not registered as Jewish by the Israeli Government, NATIV also educates and guides soldiers interested in converting to Judaism through the long and difficult conversion process. Approximately 6,500 soldiers have participated in NATIV since it was launched in 2001.

To date, over 2,000 graduates who were not registered in Israel as being Jewish according to Jewish religious law have continued their studies and completed the conversion process.


American Jewish Joint Distribution Agency Annual Campaign-funded programs


Educational Assistance in Tunisia

At schools in both Djerba and Zarzis, the Jewish Federation of Jacksonville is assisting in the renovation of school facilities and helping to fund administrative/educational positions so that the children can have the best education possible.

Parents and Children Together (PACT) in Lod

PACT is a multi-year, city-wide, comprehensive, strategic initiative that provides Ethiopian-Israeli preschoolers with the basic skills and experiences necessary so that they can enter formal schooling with an equal chance of success. The creators of PACT recognize the importance of involving Ethiopian-Israeli parents in their children's educational development. Teachers and caseworkers, through partnership and dialogue with the Ethiopian-Israeli community at large, are also able to better understand and accommodate children’s particular needs. PACT offers extensive services designed to create the strongest group effort possible in preparing Ethiopian-Israeli children for entry into the formal school system. 

These services include providing subsidies for placement in early childhood frameworks, scholastic enrichment, social enrichment activities, healthcare promotion, and home intervention programs for the most needy, at-risk families.

Leadership Training in Romania

Having experienced the devastation of the Holocaust and over 40 years of strict communist restrictions on religious freedom, the Jewish community of Romania has come to rely on these new young leaders to develop innovative engagement and educational programs. Some 22 university students from Bucharest, Oradea, Cluj and Iasi, attend weekly seminars at the Hadracha College. Characterized by their commitment to the community, eagerness to learn more about Judaism, and capacity to be self-starters, these rising leaders have been primed to lead the Romanian Jewish community. 

At the end of the academic year, participants are both inspired and prepared to organize educational opportunities for the Jewish community. In the summer, they run camps for some 160 children and youth in Bucharest, Oradea, Cluj and Iasi. These camps provided the Hadracha graduates with an opportunity to spread their knowledge in an environment conducive to learning.

In a new effort to reach out to adults in the Jewish community, one Hadracha graduate has established a unique learning program for adults that are based on the Hadracha format. The goal is to provide adults with the tools needed to develop programs that meet their peers' interests. With the success of their children and adult outreach efforts, the Hadracha graduates are developing a website dedicated to Romanian Jewish leadership.

Replete with information, program resources, ideas, and discussion forums, the website serves as the central address for people interested in learning more about the community's leadership needs and how they can best become active leaders.
Indeed, by encouraging young Jewish community members to become active leaders, the Hadracha College is having a ripple effect throughout the entire community. By facilitating this process, the Jacksonville Jewish community is helping secure the future of the Romanian Jewish community.”

FSU Hunger Relief

The states that constitute the former Soviet Union are the homes of the world’s poorest Jews and represent enormous humanitarian challenges in terms of basic welfare and sustainability. JDC and its partners focus resources where the needs are greatest. For the aged, including the region’s Holocaust survivors, JDC provides critical welfare services: home care, medicines, food, and winter relief.


World ORT

World ORT is a Jewish education and training organization that has historically conducted activities in more than 100 countries, with current operations in Israel, the CIS and Baltic States, Latin America, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, North America, Africa, Asia and the Pacific. Since its inception, over three million individuals have benefited from ORT’s educational services.

ORT was founded in St. Petersburg in 1880 to provide employable skills for Tsarist Russia’s impoverished Jewish people. Since that time, the skills taught by ORT have evolved in step with technology. The aim of ORT’s programs throughout the world is to provide its students the best possible education, preparing them to make a positive contribution to their society. Focused training enables them to undertake worthwhile and fulfilling careers, and education about Jewish people and culture gives them an understanding and appreciation of their heritage.


In Israel, World ORT has supported education and vocational training projects since the founding of the Jewish State. In partnership with the Ministry of Education, World ORT has launched Kadima Mada (Science Journey), a program encompassing hundreds of projects in the schools in the northern and southern periphery designed to raise standards in science and technology education.


Smart Class is an ambitious program to equip 1,000 classrooms in the most disadvantaged schools in Israel’s periphery with the latest technological equipment and teaching practices. The Smart Class educational system and teaching methods are a major step forward in Israel’s educational system where, until recently, there have been very few interactive learning resources available. The Smart Class program, coupled with intensive teacher training, will advance the country’s entire educational system and improve students’ academic experiences.


Through the Kav Or program, World ORT is providing after-school education to 120,000 sick children in all major hospitals throughout Israel. The students benefit from distance learning tools, assistance from volunteers and educational workshops, all designed to help them stay on top of their studies during some of the most difficult times.


In the CIS and Baltic States, ORT has more than 25,000 students of all ages—including junior high and high school students, university and graduate students, adults and the elderly—from Jewish communities in the major cities and from isolated Jewish communities in smaller villages and towns throughout the region. ORT provides training to Jewish people prior to their making aliyah, to Jewish people wishing to stay in the CIS and Baltic States and to unaffiliated Jewish people who otherwise would have no other involvement in the community. Through its vocational training centers, ORT assists Jewish people in attaining employment, and has developed special programs that offer advanced computer training for women in order to help them benefit from wider employment opportunities.


In Argentina ORT provides day school education to more than 7,000 students. Over 80% of Jewish children who attend a Jewish high school in Argentina are educated by ORT schools, which are recognized throughout Argentina as leaders in providing a high level of teaching, advanced technology and excellent Jewish education.


Additionally, the International Cooperation program provides non-sectarian humanitarian support in the form of training and education to disadvantaged communities in Africa, Eastern Europe, Latin America and Asia.


ORT works by adapting its programs to meet the needs of local communities. Despite the operational and geographic diversity of ORT’s programs and the cultural differences between the communities it serves, ORT delivers high-quality education and advanced vocational training that gives the graduates a real competitive advantage when seeking higher education and employment prospects. The implications of this are far reaching and positive both for the students themselves and for their community and region they live in, bringing new possibilities for a better life and the opportunity to break cycles of poverty and unemployment for future generations.


It is very important to ORT that its students have access to the specific skills that are required by the local market. ORT schools and centers in the Diaspora do more than just teach students–they are actually rebuilding local Jewish communities shattered by lifetimes of repression, persecution and economic disaster. Thus, ORT programs have become an exceptionally important platform for the future of so many Jewish communities around the world, despite their diversity, and ORT has done this by combining cutting-edge technology education with a reinforced sense of Jewish identity and heritage.

Through the Federation's Israel & Overseas allocation, a range of World ORT programs are funded.