National (Civil) service - Sherut Leumi



About Israeli National Service

Sherut Leumi (Israeli National Service) is an alternative voluntary national service in Israel for those that cannot or do not wish to serve in the Israel Defense Forces. The majority who receive an exemption from the obligatory army service are Jewish women from the Religious Zionist sector, and they receive it by declaring religious observance, as they maintain that a large number of religious observances for women cannot be upheld in the military such as dress codes and modesty issues. However, there are also a small number of men who serve in Sherut Leumi. Volunteers are between the ages of 18 and 21.
Sherut Leumi gives young women (and occasionally young men) exposure to a number of environments in Israeli society. Service typically requires working 30–40 hours/week over 12 to 24 months. Volunteers have the option of doing either one or two years of the National Service. Not all volunteers are Israeli citizens. It can be done on a tourist visa, and the volunteer will later receive a special volunteer visa that lasts as long as the person will be doing their service.

Young people in other sectors of Israeli society receive exemptions from the military. These include mainly Haredi men who maintain that Torah study is the main practice for defending Israel; they are exempted under the Torato Omanuto arrangements.
Arab citizens of Israel are also exempted, in order to avoid a conflict between allegiance to their country and to their Arab brothers (a decision originally taken by Israel's first Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion). Historically, very few did, but in recent years, the number of Arab youths volunteering for national service has increased. Some Israeli conscientious objectors who object to serving in the army but are not eligible for an exemption, have voiced a wish to do an alternative form of national service instead.
In 2012, after much discussion and debate, Israel's cabinet extended military service exemption for 1,300 Haredi Yeshiva students as part of the "Shirut Le'umi Mishmar." This allows Yeshiva students to join national service as opposed to joining the IDF. As part of the scheme, the defense minister is obliged to postpone the military service of Yeshiva students approved for national civil service, and who are at least 26 years old or are at least 22 years old and have at least one child.

Youths work in various programs. The majority work in schools but can also work in places such as special education, administration, hospitals, law, geriatrics, nursing homes, health clinics, teens at risk, internal security, disadvantaged communities, immigrant assistance, and many other organizations. Acceptance is based on an interview via a placement organizations that try to find the youth appropriate skills, interests, and needs.


National service programs

Amutat Shlomit

- Amutat Shlomit is a public organization, pluralistic, recognized and approved by the Director of Civil/National Service in The Ministry of Science and Technology, as a body whose operates Volunteers for a civilian national service.
Salome was the first association of civil service / national secular Jewish girls, boys and minorities. To realize the pluralistic approach to the organization in 1996 and since the Supreme Court Get national service for all citizens of Israel.
Tel: 03-6129202 | Fax: 03-6129402 Learn More

Bnei Akiva Olamit: Shalem

- Shalem is an authentic Sherut Leumi (National Service) program for girls from around the world. You will experience a meaningful year of volunteering and independent living in a religious Zionist environment, fully immersed in Israel.
Complemented by Beit Midrash Torah leaning and a variety of experiential programming, it is an uplifting, inspiring, and empowering gap year. Shalem is based in Ra’anana and offers two locations for Sherut Leumi: Beit Meir Hospital, and ALUT- day centre for children with autism. Learn More


- Bat-Ami, a well established and experienced non-profit organization in the field of National Service was founded 17 years ago to provide a solution to those wishing to contribute to the Jewish people within the National Service framework.
There are 2700 females and males between the ages of 17.5-21 serving in Bat-Ami throughout Israel and abroad, in a wide range of fields: education, welfare, community, immigrant absorption, health, security and administration. Learn More


- Aminadav was established in 1990 with the vision of facilitating volunteer placement for young women who are exempt from army service for religious reasons, and wish to serve their country as volunteers in welfare settings all over Israel. Since then, the vision has become a thriving reality, with over 1,500 volunteers each year, working in such diverse fields as education, special needs, new immigrants, welfare, the elderly, needy families, hospitals, youth at risk, and more. Each volunteer commits to full time service for at least one year and sometimes two. Learn More

Sh"L (Sherut Leumi)

- Sh"L Association for National\Civil Service was founded in 2000 by professionals from the fields of business administration, society, education and welfare. To this day, citizens volunteered for national service, thousands of volunteers came through the Association: secular, religious and Arab volunteers and made ​​a tremendous contribution to society and the community. The association conducts various and unique social programs in areas of learning (learning centers) tutorial of driving carefully, girls in risk and environment. Learn More

HaAguda LeHitnadvut

- HaAguda LeHitnadvut (Volunteering Association) is the oldest and largest organization, which currently operates more than - 5000 civil/national service volunteers in Israel from ages 17 to 24. HaAguda LeHitnadvut was founded forty years ago and operates volunteers from Israel's social spectrum, from social vision values​​. This volunteering activity strengthens the sense of belonging to society and helps reduce social inequalities. Learn More

Zichron Menachem

- Zichron Menachem runs year-round programs with volunteer groups and young women in National Service who undergo special pediatric-medical training and escort families of cancer patients throughout their ordeal. Volunteers offer their assistance in hospitals, spending their days in the Children’s Ward, occupying patients, entertaining them, and relieving exhausted parents. They also manage the on-site Recreational Center and loan special equipment, including board games, electronic toys, Game Boys, videos, and arts-and-crafts supplies, to entertain young cancer patients during their long hospital stays and periods in isolation. Learn More


- Shel"i (Israeli Sherut Leumi), for the young male and female, Jews and non-Jews, secular and religious Masorti or Charedi, ages from 17.5 to 23 who were exempt from the army for any reason and wish to volunteer for national service.

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