Machon L'Madrichei Chutz La'Aretz
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Machon L'Madrichei Chutz La'Aretz (Hebrew: מכון למדריכי חוץ לארץ) ("Institute for Youth Leaders from Abroad") is a young leadership program in Israel for high school graduates from all over the world. The Machon was founded in 1946 by the World Zionist Organization to train a cadre of Zionist youth leaders who would go back to their home countries and work in the Jewish community to pass on Zionist values and promote immigration to Israel.
Since then, over 12,000 young people have studied at the Machon, from most countries of South and Central America, Australia and New Zealand, United States and Canada, South Africa, North Africa, France, Great Britain and many others countries from the 1950s, and more recently from the Commonwealth of Independent States.
The Machon offers 17- to 19-year-olds an intensive one-year program to strengthen their leadership skills and enhance their knowledge of Judaism, Zionism, Jewish history, Hebrew and Israeli society. The program includes touring, volunteer work in development towns and kibbutzim, and encounters with Israelis to strengthen ties to Israel.
The first group of students, 30 Jewish high school graduates from South Africa, were housed at an agricultural school near Ness Ziona. In 1949, the Machon moved to a building in the Katamon neighborhood of Jerusalem. Since 1972, it has usually been located in East Talpiot,
Today the Machon runs four programs:
- English speakers
- Latin American languages (Spanish, Portuguese) speakers
- Russian speakers
- Machon Ma'ayan (religious division)
There was also for some time a program for French speakers.
For the past 10 years there has been a Machon Alumni society, Irgun Bogrei Machon Le'Madrichei Chul (ארגון בוגרי מכון למדריכי חו"ל) which is a Registered Non Profit Organisation in Israel.