ELEM was founded with the goal of assisting youth at risk and in distress in Israel to free themselves from their situation and find their place in society as adults and contributing citizens for themselves, their families and Israeli society.

ELEM was established by a group of community volunteers and professionals from Israel and the United states and was registered as a not for profit in 1983. Since then, ELEM has developed into a nationwide organization specializing in identifying the hardships that characterize the reality of the lives of youth and young adults in Israel. ELEM develops and operates innovative and relevant responses for coping with those hardships, whilst addressing the unique needs of different population groups.

Up close and personal

Today, there about 800 thousand youth aged 12-18 in Israel, a quarter of whom live in varying states of risk. For these youth, ELEM serves as a real address and helps in paving the way towards their reintegration into the community. During 2015, ELEM met with tens of thousands of adolescents as well as young adults aged 18-26, and maintained continuous and ongoing therapeutic relationships with about 20 thousand youth and young adults.

ELEM employs some 280 professionals who are amongst the best in the fields of counseling and treatment, accompanied by about 1,600 volunteers. ELEM’s staff and volunteers go out and meet youth where they are: in schools, in the community after school, on the Internet, at specific activities during summer break, on the streets at night and at local hangouts.

Working towards social change

We believe that the care of youth at risk is the responsibility of society as a whole.  Therefore, in addition to ELEM’s close collaboration with the social affairs, education, absorption and health systems, we work to raise the issue on Israel’s public agenda, and deepen the involvement of citizens and businesses in the field. This is done by creating a true partnership on behalf of youth who find themselves in situations of risk everyday. ELEM representatives participate in deliberations of Knesset committees and regularly meet with government representatives to promote fair and beneficial legislation on behalf of youth and young adults in Israel.

ELEM advocates the values of volunteerism, youth involvement and the cultivation of leadership, excellence, professionalism, openness, sensitivity, entrepreneurship, community involvement and social activism. The organization continuously works on the development of knowledge, methods and approaches for innovative informal interventions for adolescents, and works to change the perception of youth services in Israel.

20,000 youth per year

1,6000  volunteers

280        employees

78           projects

42           communities

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