Torah u’Mikzoah (TOM, as it is known) provides specialist support and vocational training to at risk religious teenage boys including native Israelis, Ethiopian immigrants and members of the Charedi community.
TOM provides a welcoming, sympathetic environment where teenage boys from different backgrounds can build a future for themselves in a religious Jewish setting. The young men living together at TOM are part of a strong community that supports and encourages each other to achieve.
TOM provides specialist support for teenage boys of Ethiopian decent, both first and second generation. Invariably these students have come from poverty-stricken areas where there is chronic unemployment and poor assimilation into Israeli culture. With their parents unable to find work due to a lack of formal education or transferable skills, many of these teenage boys are forced into finding ways to support their families. TOM gives these boys the opportunity to invest in themselves, providing training and opportunities that empower them to break the cycle of poverty.
At risk religious native Israeli boys, often second-generation immigrants, are also welcomed at TOM. Special attention is given to the Jewish way of life – students pray three times a day and services are led by the village Rabbi – but students also receive a secular education and learn skills that will help them find their place within Israeli society, whilst remaining closely connected to their religious values.
TOM also supports teenage boys from within the Charedi community.
There is an expectation that boys from this community will study at yeshivah, (an educational institution that focuses on the study of traditional religious texts). However not every boy has the ability, desire or capacity to undertake such study and live within that environment. In some cases, not attending yeshivah comes with a stigma and embarrassment to the family and in the most extreme examples, these boys can find themselves ostracised and left homeless. TOM welcomes these at risk children and provides a safe environment where they can gain a wider education and learn new skills within the context of strong Torah values. We often see the resolution of chasms between the child and his family and community thanks to TOM’s support.
TOM delivers an environment that nurtures the emotional needs of all the students and provides numerous non-curricular activities and workshops across the creative arts and sports – including martial arts, football, drama, painting and a choir that has performed at the British Embassy in Jerusalem.
Located near to Moshav Herev Le’et, the village belongs to the Bnei Akiva Yeshivah network and has close links with the local community. Many students go on to join the army, enrol in industrial colleges or work in the local industries. If not for TOM this would have been an unachievable accomplishment.
Facilities available include:
- Sports fields
- Gym with advanced equipment
- Swimming pool
- Medical centre
- Table games and more
Workshops offered include:
- Martial arts
- Music (guitar, keyboards, drums, flute and more)
- Paiting and more