Ne’emanei Torah Va’Avodah believes that the next generation is a key factor in maintaining a strong Religious Zionist community. As such, it cultivates young leaders, focusing on the community on campus, emphasizing values of tolerance, openness, and equality.
NTA Youth aims to re-infuse Israel’s Modern Orthodox youth and young adults with democratic values such as tolerance, social involvement, and national unity. NTA Youth works with a number of different demographics to ensure a stronger next generation.
Against the backdrop of declining university registration on the part of Religious Zionist students, Ne’emanei Torah Va’Avodah has opened student clubs to help strengthen religious life on campuses. In order to create a new reality on campus, Ne’emanei Torah Va’Avodah has recruited 12 campus representatives, each of whom receives a stipend for his or her work. At present, six campuses (Hebrew University, Technion, Bar-Ilan, Ariel, Ben-Gurion, and Tel Aviv) have representatives who run programming as needed and ensure that a Religious Zionist voice is heard on campus.
The program’s aim is twofold: First, Ne’emanei Torah Va’Avodah wishes to recruit new members to the movement, introducing them to our activities and cultivating the next generation of leaders. Second, Ne’emanei Torah Va’Avodah ensures that religious students have a community. Students are invited to attend Shabbat programs, seminars, shiurim, hikes, and trips; they thus have a true sense of community on campus.
Religious Zionist youth movements are especially vulnerable to trends of insularity. Run by youth for youth, they can use a helping hand when imparting messages and values. Ne’emanei Torah Va’Avodah selects, trains, and guides twenty youth leaders through the process of educating the younger generation. The values they learn and espouse reflect a balanced and open worldview. Candidates must be highly qualified and committed high school seniors who can serve as role models to their charges. The candidates selected are invited to seven training sessions throughout the year and are in constant contact with the Ne’emanei Torah Va’Avodah program coordinator to discuss issues that arise in their work.
High School Students
High school students are exposed to Ne’emanei Torah Va’Avodah’s message through our “Midreshet Torah Va’Avodah” program, in which trained young leadership runs seminars in Judaism for thousands of students in religious high schools. This is a joint program, run primarily by the Kibbutz Hadati Movement, and we are proud to be part of it.
Past Programs: Re’im
In 2004, Ne’emanei Torah Va’Avodah founded Re’im, an open Beit Midrash where young Orthodox men and women studied Bible, Talmud, and Jewish philosophy. Re’im’s participants concentrated on broad issues of Jewish life in modern society. The program operated for eight years. While the program was a success, Ne’emanei Torah Va’Avodah shifted its focus to other projects and closed Re’im in 2012.
With activities on campuses, in high schools, and in training youth educators, we are proud to say that nearly every day Ne’emanei Torah Va’Avodah holds a program dedicated to youth. Thousands of people benefit from these programs each year, which serve to strengthen the dual values of Torah and Avodah and cultivate a Religious Zionist society that is open, engaged, and educated.
A number of foundations were instrumental in helping NTA Youth in its formative years: most notably, the Ted Arison Family Foundation, the Poppers Prins Foundation, the Levi Lassen Foundation, and Yad Hanadiv.
We are pleased to have the Youth Movement program currently funded by the Poppers Prins Foundation. Midreshet Torah Va’Avodah is run jointly with the Religious Kibbutz Movement.
Most other elements of NTA Youth are currently funded by private donors; however, more support will make it possible for us to expand to new horizons.