Aardvark israel
GAP YEAR OR SEMESTER | 4-9 MONTHS

Masa Year of Service

Spend a year helping those who need it most. Through this ground-breaking program, you will strengthen your Jewish identity and grow in your connection to Israel through hands-on service experiences.

Program Overview

Duration: 4-5 months or 9 months
Fall Semester: September-December
Spring Semester: January-May
Year Program: September-May
Dive deep into the concept of social responsibility–for each other, for our land, and for our nation. Contribute to Israeli society and build lasting relationships with Israelis.
  • Volunteer through the Israel Volunteer Association alongside Israelis engaged in Sherut Leumi – a year of national service
  • Gain deep experience in fields such as education, health, welfare, and co-existence
  • Live and volunteer alongside Israelis completing a year of service

Students will volunteer for 8 hours a day, 4 days a week in organizations such as hospitals, schools, kindergartens, and NGO’s. Placements will provide relevant on-the-job training in those fields and students will become a valuable member of the team as they contribute to their work placements. Students will work side by side with Israelis from diverse backgrounds, thus being immersed in Israel society, meeting different types of Israel, and improving their Hebrew.

Ulpan, Field trips and Educational Seminars

One day a week, students will have educational and enrichment activities. These will include Hebrew ulpan, educational seminars focusing on Judaism and Zionism, and field trips to explore Israel.

Through evening activities and optimizing their free time, participants will have both social and educational opportunities to further enhance their experience. Options will include sports, social and cultural events, guest speakers, and leadership development activities. These opportunities will empower participants to explore the many faces of Israel.

Weekends are free for the students to travel around Israel, visit friends and family, or enjoy a relaxing weekend in their own apartment.

Living in Tel Aviv, participants will be able to take full advantage of the cultural enrichment, night life, and convenience of the one of the most popular cities in Israel for today’s young adults. Participants will be immersed into Israeli society, meeting their Israeli neighbors, shopping for groceries in the local shops, and navigating on public transportation, giving them the chance to truly “live like a local.” Apartments are shared only by participants in the program. All the apartments are fully furnished and equipped with kitchen appliances and utensils. Every apartment has WiFi. With the guidance of a qualified counselor, participants will learn to cook, clean, budget, do laundry, and live together with roommates. They will receive a stipend from the program for their weekly groceries and apartment needs. Understanding that this will be the first time most of the students are living on their own, staff will work with the participants in each apartment to ensure a positive group dynamic and the health and welfare of the participants. Throughout the year, the counselors hold weekly apartment meetings to facilitate and solve any issues which may arise.  They will also pay friendly, regular visits to the apartments. As the year progresses, the participants will be encouraged to be more independent in their problem-solving in order to foster growth and maturity.
Living in Tel Aviv, participants will be able to take full advantage of the cultural enrichment, night life, and convenience of the one of the most popular cities in Israel for today’s young adults. Participants will be immersed into Israeli society, meeting their Israeli neighbors, shopping for groceries in the local shops, and navigating on public transportation, giving them the chance to truly “live like a local.” Participants will receive a monthly local bus pass enabling them to get to and from their placement, plus attend activities, field trips, and explore the city.
A year of giving back with the iva
Israel Volunteer Association
The Israel Volunteer Association is a non-profit organization that has been operating for 40 years to help strengthen the social resilience of Israel through volunteering in general and through volunteering for Civilian Service in particular. The Israel Volunteer Association (IVA) is the social-voluntary organization with the widest scope of activities in Israel, employing volunteers of all ages and from all sectors and population groups, in a vast range of fields. These volunteers positively affect the lives of millions of civilians in Israel by their integration into the fields of education, welfare, health, security, the environment, government ministries and social services. Over the last few years the IVA have developed additional programs that compliment other endeavors in the civilian field, in order to keep being key partners in the Israeli social civilian activity.
  • The IVA directs more than 9000 volunteers (per year) from a variety of groups – employing Jewish and Arab, secular and religious, male and female, disabled and non-disabled volunteers.
  • The IVA has over 180,000 alumni who, through the Association’s efforts, received a real opportunity to contribute to Israeli society.
  • The Association’s volunteers jointly contribute over 12 million volunteering hours per year
Logo en israeli2 150iva
A year of giving back with the iva

Location - Tel Aviv

Israel’s second largest city, beautifully set on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, and known by the locals as the city that never sleeps. An anomaly in the Middle East, Tel Aviv is a cosmopolitan, open-minded, vibrant city that is also filled with rich history and diverse traditions from all over the world. As the center of the “Start-Up Nation,” the city boasts much more than its popular beaches. With an exciting nightlife and expansive cultural attractions, students will love living in this modern and diverse city.