A total of 145 ShinShinim (gap-year emissaries) will depart this month for communities around the world on behalf of the Jewish Agency for Israel to begin a year of voluntary service to help strengthen world Jewry’s relationship with Israel before their required national army service.

They will arrive against the backdrop of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, rising anti-Semitism and a young generation of Jews who studies show are distancing themselves from Israel.

Once there, they will work closely with local Federations and other Jewish organizations to provide educational activities for youth movements, Jewish day schools and community centers. They live with host families or in shared apartments, which allows them to immerse themselves in their new environment.