Thousands of lone soldiers volunteer each year to serve in the IDF and to protect us – let’s help protect them.
500 discharged lone soldiers volunteer as Big Brothers and Sisters for other lone soldiers – let’s help support them.
The Big Brother Organization for Lone Soldiers
Ach Gadol is not about what we are but about who we are.
Over 10 years ago, we started a unique social initiative that aimed to provide a response to the need for support, guidance, and one-on-one counseling for young people who are on their own, trying to integrate into Israeli society. We created an address that would provide this kind of support, and we called it Ach Gadol.
An Ach Gadol – literally, a Big Brother – is a volunteer who was once a lone soldier and completed military service, who can draw upon personal experiences to provide the tools that are necessary for each lone soldier: helping to develop feelings of resilience and ability; giving information and insights about how to utilize one’s rights as a lone soldier in the IDF; acting as a cultural bridge; and even providing emotional support at times when the lone soldier feels alone.
We started out with 15 volunteers. Today, as a result of Ach Gadol’s work, we are already 500 volunteers strong. We provide annual, ongoing support for over 1500 lone soldiers, and we prepare about 500 young people in advance of their military service each year.
The Organization’s Activity in Numbers
What is a Big Brother?
Your contribution can help another lone soldier
Please click on a volunteer to hear his/her story
About Ach Gadol: Big Brother Organization for Lone Soldiers
There are currently 6400 soldiers serving in the IDF who have the status of lone soldier. While guarding us at borders and checkpoints, these soldiers are simultaneously dealing with cultural, educational, informational, and economic gaps. Most importantly, they lack the support and guidance of a nuclear family.
A young soldier without family support confronts a daily struggle to survive. Upon returning home, instead of enjoying a hot meal prepared by his or her mother, the soldier is forced to deal with bills, rent, food preparation, house cleaning, laundry, and more. All of these daily concerns divert the soldier’s attention from military missions and weaken his or her personal resilience. In cases where there is no external support, many soldiers end their military service prematurely or return to their country of origin.
While these gaps exist even before enlistment in the IDF, they deepen during military service and sometimes worsen after discharge. For this reason, we established Ach Gadol, an organization dedicated to providing support for lone soldiers.
Your small change can have a big impact on soldiers. You can donate your spare change by rounding up credit card purchases.
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