A growing number of young people do not feel connected to Israel’s proud history – or the Zionist values on which it was founded. As a result, an unprecedented number of Israelis are refusing to take up the responsibility of national service.
Since the country’s founding, the IAF has been one of its greatest symbols of national pride. It has produced many of Israel’s greatest leaders, not just in the military or in politics, but in all corners of society.
The Leadership Training draws on the values, history, and inspiration of Israel’s Air Force to empower Israeli youth and mold them into future leaders. A unique partnership between the IAF Center and the Air Force, the Israel Air Force Center is pioneering an innovative model of cooperation between educational and military institutions not found anywhere else in Israel. The IAF’s history, culture and values provide a framework to instill the principles of national service, the ideals of Zionism, and the tangible skills to lead.
IAF Young Leadership Programs:
IAF Pre-Military Course (Gadna) – prepares young Israelis ages 16-18 for meaningful army service through a comprehensive educational program and intensive physical training. Highlights include a 3-day boot camp and an ongoing mentorship plan that preserves the connection with the IAF Center
IAF Youth Corps – targets young Israelis ages 17-19 from diverse populations including at-risk youth, Ethiopians, ultra-Orthodox lone soldiers , Bedouins, and Arab Israelis. These youth develop leadership qualities while learning basic life skills. They absorb Israel Air Force heritage and Zionist values, enabling them to make a long-lasting contribution to Israeli society.
IAF Cadets – trains young adults ages 19-22 to serve as IAF ambassadors at air force events around the world. They promote the IAF's global humanitarian role, including aid to refugees and emergency missions during earthquakes and other major natural disasters outside Israel.
Enrichment programs – students ages 12-15 from all over Israel develop a relationship with the IAF by learning about model airplanes and robotics in an experiential and engaging way.