CHABAD site of English
Chabad’s Terror Victims Project operates as an independent organization under the auspices and umbrella of the Chabad Youth Organization, known in Israel as Tzeirei Chabad.
Tzeirei Chabad, is the largest religious, social service agency in the country, serving Jews from across the religious and political spectrum. With 306 Chabad Houses across the land of Israel, Chabad serves the religious, social and educational needs of every Jew regardless of affiliation, level of observance or non-observance, regardless of social or economic status, regardless of their level of education or profession. It is a movement loved by the citizens of Israel, for each and every Israeli knows that Chabad values each Jew and works towards bettering their lives, both physically and spiritually. We are concerned that people have jobs, food and clothing. We work to keep teens off drugs and kids of the street. We give support to new immigrants, literally taking them by the hand and guiding them through the maze of Israeli bureaucracy.
From its foundation in 1952, Tzeirei Chabad has enjoyed steady growth, funded by grants and donations from within Israel and from the Jewish community in the Diaspora. Under the direction of its Chairman, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchok Aronov, the organization has grown from 55 Chabad Houses in 1983 to 220 Chabad Houses in 1997. This growth is a result of the continuing demand for Tzeirei Chabad’s services and the organization’s proven administrative and programmatic abilities.
The Philosophy of Chabad, as taught from its origins in the late 1700’s, encompasses a love for every Jew, and a concern that the physical needs of every Jew, including food, shelter, clothing and employment, takes precedent.
As a social service agency, Tzeirei Chabad offers assistance in finding employment, filling the pantry with food, helping with the needs and special problems of children and youth, offering counseling to solve family problems and to fight against despair and apathy. Special programs serve the needs of the Widows and Orphans of Fallen Soldiers, while soup kitchens feed the hungry, and hospital and nursing home visitations nourish the sick and elderly.
As an educational agency, Tzeirei Chabad runs a system of day care centers, nursery schools, kindergartens and day schools; offers after school programs to keep problem youth off the streets; and sponsors dozens of special events throughout the year to engage and captivate youth in productive, life affirming activities. Tzeirei Chabad operates the largest, nation-wide summer camp program in Israel, attracting tens of thousands of young campers to enriching, life-enhancing activities that promote fun and physical development, and develop strong moral character, as well.
As a religious organization, Tzeirei Chabad teaches the fundamentals of the Jewish religion in such a way as to expose people to the warmth, joy and richness of their Jewish heritage and to offer them a choice and path to participate. Many Chabad Houses run religious services throughout the week and especially on the Sabbath and Holidays. Their doors are open to everyone, no membership is required, no tickets need be purchased on the High Holidays. Hundreds of thousands of brochures and newsletters explaining the meaning of holidays and Jewish customs are distributed each year to adults and youth. All materials are written in both Hebrew and Russian.
There are two Israels. The one you read about in travel brochures and history books and visit on tours. And the one in which Israelis live, day-in and day-out. This second Israel is, like every country, plagued with social problems of unemployment, poverty, drugs, juvenile delinquency, crime, apathy and despair. There are large segments of Israeli society who struggle for their day to day existence, whose children have become disaffected, disillusioned, and apathetic.
The large wave of Russian immigrants has created its own special set of problems. Arriving immigrants have no Jewish education, no sense of ownership of the new land to which they’ve come. Many are elderly and have difficulty finding employment. Many are teenagers, struggling to find a sense of identity in a strange land. Their difficulties with language and at school make them prime targets for school problems and delinquency. The stress of coping with a new country, new culture, new way of life takes its toll on family unity, family integrity and strength. The problems are too numerous to describe in detail. Yet, the large numbers of Russian immigrants require social services that are tailored to their unique needs and culture. And for this Chabad, with its roots in Eastern Europe, is renowned for being the most successful group to serve the new Russian-Jewish population in Israel.
Government budgetary constraints limit the school day in Israel to 1:00 pm. Too many children spend their afternoons on the streets, where they are easy prey for drugs and petty larceny. Social programs are lacking, and often children are left unsupervised and unoccupied. The need for after school programming is far from recreational. It is a need that must be filled lest we develop a generation of underprivileged youth that has been raised on the values of the street, rather than the values of a productive, moral society. Summer camps are even more vital. The alternative becomes long summer days with nothing to do but get into trouble.
To meet the social, religious and educational needs of the Israeli population, Tzeirei Chabad, today administers 220 Chabad Houses.
These are grass roots branches that earn the trust of the people, that become an integrated part of the neighborhood. The workers in these Chabad Houses spend their time on the street and in the homes. They become known and trusted. They are friends with the children and their parents. They know the ins and outs of life in their community, whether it be a Sephardic Morrocan moshav, a neighborhood of Ashkenazic Jews, or an apartment high rise filled with Russian immigrants. After school programs are specially designed for this specific community, this group of people – whoever they may be. So are the kindergartens. Day care centers. Classes. And camps.
Soldiers. Prisoners. The sick, hospital bound, and disabled. Children and adults. The list of services is endless. The energy of the Chabad Youth Workers is boundless. The orginality and creativity of the programs are inspiring and captivate the imaginations of people of all ages. And the numbers of Israelis helped and encouraged by our massive organization are in the hundreds of thousands.
Each Chabad House works to foster Jewish unity and to strengthen the common bonds and highest values of the Jewish people. All programs are non-discriminatory and are open to every Israeli. The following are a list of some of the programs and activities that take place: