Dormitory Graduates –Not “Lone Soldiers”
The Beit Tuvia Community offers a unique support program for its graduates, aged 19-21, in military or national service. Program graduates without stable family support live in the kibbutz on weekends and holidays. A Beit Tuvia social worker assists them with various decisions and is in constant contact with army commanders, employers, and social service agencies.
Program graduates reflect the successes of Beit Tuvia. All of our teens complete 12 years of schooling, and most sit for either full or partial matriculation exams. The vast majority of them joins the Israel Defense Forces or performs national service, while others join more open rehabilitative programs.
Dr. Anita Weiner of the University of Haifa conducted a study in collaboration with the Beit Tuvia staff and graduates. The findings show that Beit Tuvia’s contributions to its graduates have been extremely significant, especially in connection with their emotional and social development. This progress was noted in comparison with students’ problematic state when they arrived at Beit Tuvia, but also, as evidenced by the teens’ own responses, in connection with their memories of time in the community and their willingness to express appreciation for the personal support and dedication of the staff. In connection with scholastic and employment issues, the study points to the graduates’ self-confidence, optimism about the future, and work ethic they acquired while in Beit Tuvia. Despite the limitations of their family history and their difficult economic situation, the study shows that most program graduates live normative lives similar to other citizens their age.