L'Ovda V L'Shomra Program
Planting Roots in the Younger Generation
A multi-day educational program providing its adolescents with a sense of belonging, responsibility and initiative.
2,000+ participants in 2016 |Up to 10 days of educational programming in the field | 14-25 year-old participants
L'Ovda V L'Shomra, which means "to work and to protect", is a fun and dynamic educational program strengthening Zionist values, implementing social change and restoring a lost dimension to Israel's agriculture among the younger generation. This burgeoning program provides 14 to 25 year-old adolescents a unique, hands-on experience of self-discovery and connection to the land of Israel. Based on collective agricultural work, educational development and personal empowerment, participants spend between three to ten days working collaboratively in small, diverse group. Together, they labor in farms and forests, study agriculture, Jewish heritage and Zionism, and care for the land. Each day focuses on a fundamental Zionist principle: the first day understanding the individual; the second day learning about community; the third day studying the "nation"; and so forth. Participants strengthen their personal identity through their work with the land, developing a deep appreciation and connection to it. Designed as a mission-driven, team-oriented, and interactive program, L'Ovda V L'Shomra challenges these young adults to fully understand their role and responsibility in society and inspires them to get involved in their communities. Run in partnership with KKL-JNF, L'Ovda V L'Shomra ran a pilot program in early 2015 with two high schools. The first year hosted a total of 200 participants, bringing together diverse factions of Israeli society for this unique and meaningful experience. L'Ovda V L'Shomra has been successful at imparting the central ideals of love and respect for the land and mutual responsibility among these members of the younger generation. "L'Ovda V L'Shomra was an emotional, educational and valuable experience for the students and teachers alike. It strengthened the student-teacher relationship and the unity of the class and grade level, and emphasized values such as solidarity and mutual responsibility. The program connected the students to the land - their homeland - and the responsibility they bear for it. Thanks to HaShomerHaChadash, students discovered abilities within them that were hidden until this experience." – Rachel Shulmark, Teacher, Kiryat Gat Participants come away from their experience with a sense of belonging, responsibility and initiative, giving them a profound understanding for their roles in their families, schools and communities as well respect for their surroundings and a stronger connection to the State of Israel.