Encouraging the Draft & Preparation for the IDF תמונה ראשית תוכן דףThe aim of the Defense and Society Department at the Ministry of Defense is encouraging youth to draft to the IDF and preparing them for a meaningful service. This is accomplished in cooperation with the IDF by coordinating a vairety of activities that expose Israel's youth to the different units in the military and displays their integral role in shaping Israel's past, present and future. The department coordinates educational activities at roughly 600 high schools across the country. Some of these activities are: preparatory workshops geared specifically towards juniors and seniors (prior to drafting), workshops for parents, activities for youth at risk, and team-building outdoor activities. "Be'ekvot Lochamim" - Golan Heights TrekThe Be'ekvot Lochamim project is a key element in the preparation of youth for military service. This project was developed to strengthen young Israelis' connection to the heritage and history of their country and instill a sense of identification with the values upon which Israeli society and the IDF were built. The trek takes place in the Golan Heights because the battles that took place in the region were integral to the establishment and defense of the State of Israel. The story of the region has and continues to have a great influence on the character of Israeli society. This trek is held annually, with thousands of high school seniors participating from across the country. The journey lasts nine days and includes visits to key battle sites and stories of heroic acts performed by IDF soldiers. The lectures are given by some of Israel's greatest war heroes, such as Brig. Gen. (res) Avigdor Kahalni. The trek ends with an impressive live-fire exercise conducted by IDF troops. Workshop for High School Seniors:The workshop is geared toward students in their final year of high school and builds on the workshop catering to juniors, titled, "Anticipating the Draft." The first workshop focuses on drafting and evaluation processes. The senior's workshop focuses on preparation for service and unit placement. Objectives:1.To initiate an open discussion between the students and moderator in a supportive environment that allows the students to express their concerns, aspirations and hopes as they reach their draft date2. To provide information about the placement and recruitment process3. To serve as a forum for debate on the importance of a meaningful military service and to discuss the role of the military in integrating the various parts of Israeli society (immigrants, minorities, etc.) Parents Workshop:The Parents Workshop was estalished because traditionally, Israeli parents are heavily involved in their child's drafting process. The workshop provides parents with the opportunity to become better acquainted with the recruitment process, hold open discussions about their experiences, help ease concerns, and gain advice on how to effectively accompany their child throughout his/her military service. Information Sessions: Various lectures and information sessions are held for high school students. Gadna:The Gadna program enables students to experience the military over a short period of time, and serves as an important step in their preparation for IDF service. The week-long program empowers students and provides them with a positive experience in a military framework.