‘Super Savta’ Brings Warmth to ALEH

ALEH has many wonderful Chanukah traditions, but one of our favorites is Dr. Violet Esser’s annual pilgrimage to our residential facility in Jerusalem. Each year, Dr. Esser, known to many in the organization as ‘Super Savta,’ visits ALEH to personally deliver beautiful handmade blankets – her own creations, made with love – to our babies and toddlers. The ALEH staff … Read More

National Volunteer Day 2018

At the end of October the Ministry of Social Affairs organized a fun day for all the volunteers in Israel in Kibutz Shefayim. All the ALEH volunteers were also invited. As ALEH volunteers we gathered in the morning at the Appolonia National Park, for fellowship, pizza and exploring the park. After that we walked along part of the Israel trail … Read More

Volunteer crowds in the Negev

At ALEH Negev we currently have a record number of volunteers (22). This does put some pressure on the two volunteer houses, but the volunteers from Germany, England, the Netherlands, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Puerto Rico and South Africa make the most of it. A very stressful moment was when the air alarm went off last week due to the rocket rain … Read More

A Doctoral Degree Candidate takes a hands-on approach

Monique is from Taiwan and has previously worked in management positions at non-governmental organizations. At the moment, she is writing her doctorate in social work. She came to Israel and to ALEH though an advertisement which the Israeli Ministry of Social Welfare published in Taiwan. During a meeting at her place of work as a volunteer, I ask her why … Read More

Avia’s Wedding Complete With her ALEH Negev Friends

Avia was a National Service volunteer at the ALEH Negev-Nahalat Eran village for two years. During her first year, Avia was a member of the staff at Beit Zohar, a home to young women with severe intellectual and developmental disabilities. During her second year of service, in keeping with her desire to influence how those who are different are received … Read More

Lea shares her experience

My volunteering at ALEH Jerusalem emerged to 62 days of sovereignty, happiness, freedom and blessedness. I am Lea (18), from Germany and decided to do a traineeship in ALEH Jerusalem after the achievement of my graduation. My normal working day started at 7:30. That means getting up at 6 am and taking the bus at 6:40 to be in time. … Read More

Volunteer Outing in Jerusalem

Our monthly volunteer outing was this time in Jerusalem. There are currently more than 30 foreign volunteers active at ALEH, in Jerusalem, Gedera and the Negev. We split up into two groups. The first group started at the Gush Katif Museum where they learned more about the history and eviction of Gush Katif (the former Jewish villages in the Gaza … Read More

Echo, our first volunteer from China

Life in Aleh is the most precious memory in my life. Although we could seldom do anything to change the physical conditions of kids in the High Dependency Unit, by simply accompanying them and letting them feel loved and respected, we made their lives easier and happier. We can hardly teach them how to talk or walk, because some of … Read More

MAZAL TOV – Akiva and Yiscah are Engaged!

This year, ALEH Jerusalem’s summer camp hosted one of the most exciting and emotional activities any ALEH camp has ever experienced! The 32 children and 100 staff, volunteers and National Service volunteers joyfully took part in the engagement party of Akiva and Yiscah, two dedicated, long-term ALEH volunteers. About three years ago, Akiva and Yiscah began volunteering at ALEH. They … Read More

"Nice to meet you" Hello to LESEA from Moldova

Your name My name is Lesea, it’s very complicated name for pronunciation in Israel, with this name was a lot of funny moments. Coming from I am from small and beautiful Moldova – I also volunteered in our volunteering center in Chisinau. Now i try to make good mood children in Aleh Gedera Why have you come to volunteer in … Read More

A sporty trip

It was time again for our monthly volunteer trip, this time in Jerusalem. We met at ALEH Jerusalem because most volunteers did not know this branch yet. After a small introduction – this time with many Taiwanese volunteers 😊 – we visited the different classes and became acquainted with the children and the care. Then we went to lunch in … Read More

A Stunning Success: ALEH’s UK Young Leadership Committee Hosts First-Ever Fundraiser

On Sunday evening, July 1, the newly-formed Young Leadership Committee of the British Friends of ALEH hosted its first-ever event to benefit the children of ALEH: a quiz night at the Adam & Eve Pub in London.  The incredibly successful fundraiser was oversubscribed, with 80 young professionals in attendance to participate in the fun and creative team trivia competition and … Read More

A volunteer trip to Gush Etzion

Last week we were happy to spend a sunny day in Gush Etzion with our great volunteers. Unfortunately, Gush Etzion – a region south of Jerusalem – has not made any good reports in recent years. Almost every day there were terrorist attacks in the region. Fortunately, the situation has calmed down for several months, also due to the strong … Read More

ALEH Moriah Volunteer Eliyahu Rosenfeld Singled Out by President Reuven Rivlin for Presidential Award

At a special ceremony held at the presidential residence for the 5,000 National Service volunteers serving in myriad positions throughout the country, President Reuven Rivlin singled out eight volunteers whose personal stories inspire, motivate and encourage. One of those special eight was 20-year-old Eliyahu Rosenfeld, ALEH Moriah’s invaluable volunteer. Exempt from army service for medical reasons, Eliyahu decided to use … Read More

Volunteers Remember

Last week we had another volunteer day. This time on a special day, because it was Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day) in Israel. We started the day at ALEH Gedera with two minutes of silence to remind while the siren went off at ten o’clock. Then we got a tour at ALEH, saw a workshop where the residents made clay … Read More

Dreamers from Oregon Become Doers At ALEH

Oregon’s state slogan is “We love dreamers.”  But the recent volunteerism of Oregon natives Rev. Robert Rapp, Gary and Cheryl Logerstedt, Michelle Brands, Jennifer Trayes and David Smith proved that they are so much more than dreamers – they are doers with hearts of gold.  For the second time, Rev. Rapp brought a delegation of American Christian supporters of Israel … Read More

I feel enriched

Shalom, my name is Kate. I came from Poland and I am volunteering in Israel over one year now. Almost every day I spend time with lovely residents in Aleh Moriah in Gedera. Before I came here I didn’t expect that during my time in Israel I will experience, see, receive so many wonderful things and meet amazing and interesting … Read More

Volunteer of the Year!

Dr. Sarah Israel is an American social worker, mother of a 29-year-old girl with intellectual and developmental disabilities. She works for an agency that assists people with disabilities. Essentially, Sarah decided to dedicate her life to caring for and assisting people with special needs, her daughter’s friends. In 2013, during an El Al flight to Israel, Sarah was exposed to … Read More

I will never forget this time!

It has been a week now since I came back in the freezing cold Netherlands and I’m looking back at three amazing months in Israel. I did beautiful, inspiring work with the disabled residents of Aleh Negev. Sometimes the work was tiring but many more times it was grateful work. Everyday I could laugh with the residents! I also got … Read More

ALEH and Israel gained a warm place in my heart

My best friend and I got the opportunity to go abroad for a minor of our Nursing course. So when Andrea suggested to go to Israel, I doubted a little at first. I had never been that far from home and certainly not for two months. Anyway, a few weeks later I was on the plane to Israel. Once I … Read More

A Cozy Chanukah at ALEH!

Dr. Violet Esser of Canada and her daughter visited ALEH’s residential facility in Jerusalem to deliver special Chanukah gifts to our babies and toddlers: beautiful handmade blankets created by Violet herself. The ALEH staff was so touched by Violet’s warmth and look forward to using her thoughtful gifts to keep the residents warm throughout the winter months. BUT THAT’S NOT … Read More

Keep calm and be a volunteer

„Why you are not afraid…?”- many people were asking me. „Of what…?” We are afraid of things that we don’t know. But I really wanted to know how it actually is in Israel. So I’ve gone out of my comfort zone which was a gate on the polish airport. It was one of the best steps in my life until … Read More


An awesome group of volunteers and friends of ALEH took a typical Sunday and turned it into a day of fun, exercise, awareness and fundraising! These super-stars from Maccabi GB organized a Spin-a-thon to benefit ALEH, cycling a collective 3,075 miles, as though they were riding from England all the way to ALEH’s residential facility in Jerusalem! They spread the word … Read More

A Meaningful Mitzvah Day!

As part of the United Kingdom’s extensive Mitzvah Day activities last week, children at JW3, the Akiva School and the Bushey Shul made wonderful Chanukah cards for the children of ALEH. Our amazing kids are going to love receiving these cards during Chanukah – they will no doubt be the highlight of our holiday festivities. A huge thank you to … Read More

Mitzvah Day UK comes to ALEH Jerusalem

Every year in November, children and young adults across the United Kingdom participated in “Mitzvah Day,” giving of their time – rather than their money – to make a difference in their communities. For the first time in Mitzvah Day history, the social action project extended well beyond the borders of the UK…to ALEH’s residential facility in Jerusalem! ALEH was … Read More


“I am the mother of a lovely 29 year old daughter named Jewel. I know how important it is that all jewels with special needs get the best care possible. I have worked for several years with agencies for the disabled, but I have never come across a place like ALEH Village! As a child growing up in Crown Heights, … Read More

Volunteer Family amazed by ALEH's work

To the ALEH family, This past weekend, we were privileged to host Sarah again – the fourth year in a row! (She comes to stay with us twice a year, on Passover and Sukkot). We just wanted to tell you how amazed we are with her progress. Each time we can’t get over how much she is advancing, especially her … Read More

60 Volunteers come to ALEH Jerusalem for Shabbat

ALEH Jerusalem’s volunteers set a new record when 60 volunteers arrived for a volunteers’ Shabbat!! In honor of the occasion, the center presented the volunteers with a huge challah in the shape of ALEH’s logo. The many volunteers brought a great deal of joy to the residents with a festive Kabbalat Shabbat, fun activities, and the beginning of the preparatory … Read More

Apparently I had three sisters at ALEH

‘Jalla bye’ calls our taxi driver Jossi after he dropped Thirza and me off at the bus stop. In the meantime he is laughing at us because we both have to make an effort to stretch our skirts to the knee length. We are taking the religious bus to Jerusalem. The bus stops at Ofakim, in front of the flat … Read More

Sister time in Israel

Volunteering in Israel has been our dream for a last two years, after we visited here for the first time. We both fell in love with this holy land immediately and as a Christians wanted to give something for the people of Israel. We are sisters from Finland, Venla 22 and Aino 20. We wanted to come here together because … Read More

All in the (ALEH) family

All in the (ALEH) family

ALEH is just a one big family. That was quite clear during our volunteering day in Jerusalem last month when 6 of the 7 volunteers at ALEH Negev came from 3 families. We had Jacob and Janine, brother and sister and Thirza and Jöelle, two sisters all from Holland and Aino and Venla, two sisters from Finland. Last summer we … Read More

Jael the Angel

Even though it doesn’t feel like it, I have been with ALEH for one month and a half and the idea that I have only two more weeks to go shocks me. When I decided to come for two months, everyone asked me why for so long, and now everything will soon be over? How is it possible? The answer … Read More

Foto Safari

Machane Yehuda

In July our monthly volunteer outing took place in Jerusalem. After an interesting meeting and a small tour in our Jerusalem facilities, especially for our new arrivals, we went to the Shuk (market). After a delicious lunch, we took had a photo safari on the Jerusalem market. We all had a lot of fun and great pictures were made! Then … Read More

That I would never have expected

After finishing high school, I decided to go to Israel and volunteer at ALEH Negev-Nahalat Eran for eight months. It was the most intense and exciting time of my life. I had the opportunity to meet many people and to feel part of a much greater whole. What excited me most was the relationship with the residents. Their disabilities vary, … Read More

ALEH residents enjoy high flying fun  at a Graduation Ceremony for IAF pilots

  Major General Amir Eshel, Commander in Chief of the Israeli Air Force, is a longtime friend of ALEH and a member of our Board of Governors. Whenever graduation season rolls around, he always makes sure to invite his extended family from ALEH Negev- Nahalat Eran to the annual commencement ceremony for the outgoing pilots because he knows how much … Read More

Volunteers Live the Bible

Yesterday, we had a fantastic outing in Jerusalem with our wonderful volunteers! Our day started with a meeting and a short tour of ALEH’s Jerusalem facility. We then enjoyed a yummy Israeli lunch at Pinati in the center of town. During our walk to the old city, we shared our experiences at ALEH with one another. We then walked on … Read More

Volunteer now with ALEH!

For this summer we have still a few places open: Negev: 6 August – 27 September. Jerusalem: from now until the end of August. Apply now! https://aleh.org/volunteering/

My time in ALEH

I can barely describe the time I had in ALEH Negev, but if you would ask me for one word to do it, I would probably say: special. In summer 2016 I graduated from high school and decided to go to ALEH Negev for 6 months. I heard about ALEH in my church and I knew that it was on … Read More

German volunteer meets German president

Timo who has been volunteering with ALEH Negev for the last seven months was invited to a meeting with the German president mr. Frank-Walter Steinmeier during his three day visit to Israel. This of course was a great honor to him and to ALEH.

Holocaust Remembrance Day – ALEH Negev – Nahalat Eran

The Yom Hashoah memorial ceremony at ALEH’s rehabilitative village in the Negev was especially meaningful this year, as it was attended by Timo, a German volunteer. Timo is passionate about his work at ALEH, which he sees as a way of atoning for the sins of his grandparents’ generation, those complicit in the horrors carried out by the Nazis during … Read More

Gabriela's Evaluation

.. I just want to say thank you; That I could be half a year at ALEH Moria-Gedera. Half a year full of interesting encounters, touching experiences, loving people, and above all, the recognition of the full presence of God at every second of this time. Of course, everything is not like running smoothly and peacefully. There was the time, … Read More

Volunteers celebrate Purim

It’s almost time, Sunday is Purim, in memory of a miraculous deliverance of the Jewish people. Almost everyone in Israel will participate in the reading of the book of Esther, in which this particular history is described. At ALEH this whole week we already celebrated Purim. All our facilities celebrated with the residents, staff, parents, siblings and of course the … Read More


Daniel, a student at the ALEH Negev-Nahalat Eran special education school, dreamed of having his Bar Mitzvah in Beit HaMikdash. This may sound far-fetched, but good will, that stretched over the ocean, helped Daniel come as close as possible to realizing his dream. A class of students from the Beth Jacob school in Redwood city, California, decided to collect money … Read More

The sound of silence

Early in the morning I am walking with one of the residents through the grounds of ALEH-Negev. It is quiet and we can feel the warmth of the rising sun. We walk further and he makes a sound that means ‘stop pushing the wheelchair’. He picks a flower from the garden, turns around with a big smile on his face … Read More

Behind every face there is a person

In one of the first weeks I wrote a reflection about the meaning of life. This subject has dominated my thoughts for a while. Now, a few weeks later, I can say that working at ALEH and thinking about the meaning of life has really changed my view. I appreciate my own life much more than I did before. Life … Read More

Multiculturalism in care

Walking through the streets of Jerusalem, I pass by many people with a lot of different cultures. Israel is a country of many cultures (multiculturalism); Jews, Arabs and Christians all live together. Problems between people of these different cultures are common. Walking through the door of ALEH Jerusalem, I see a completely different world. A world were cultures come together, … Read More


Simon Weststeijn is the first member of ALEH’s administrative staff to arrive every morning and one of the last to leave every evening.  As the point person for all international volunteers for ALEH, Israel’s foremost network of state-of-the-art facilities for children with severe intellectual and developmental disabilities, Simon handles all of the logistics prior to the volunteers’ arrival in Israel … Read More

Thank you ALEH family!

Hi, ALEH! I just thought I would message you with thanks. I’m from Sydney, Australia, and I volunteered for ALEH two years ago when I was on a gap year program for 5 months in Jerusalem called Israel By Choice. When I first started at ALEH, I experienced a whirlwind of emotions. At first, I was a bit apprehensive and … Read More

Dutch Volunteers Clown around at ALEH Moriah

ALEH Moriah was recently lucky to have a very special couple who volunteered for a month at the facility: Mark, a medical clown, and his wife Aafke, from Holland. Mark regularly made rounds of the houses, clowning around with residents and staff. Mark and Aafke connected deeply with everyone at ALEH, interacting without language, but with an abundance of laughter … Read More