In light of the following:
- Jerusalem, the Capital of the Jewish people, loses thousands of people every year, and
- That young people between the ages of 20-35 represent 50% of those who leave the city, and
- This population is deemed essential for the economic well-being, cultural diversity and spiritual vibrancy of the city, and
- Of the many reasons identified as a cause for this emigration, two of the primary ones include the lack of appropriate educational opportunities for their children and the absence of a sense of belonging to community,
The Jerusalem Municipality has established the provision of educational services for the ‘young family’ population as an essential goal. In this spirit, the Jerusalem municipality reached out to Shir Hadash – a leading organization in both strengthening the educational opportunities as well as the sense of community for this population – and requested we build a Gan Yeladim – Early Childhood Center. As Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat commented upon his visit to the site of this future Center: “When I look around here and see all the children I say, this is exactly what Jerusalem needs today!”
From an organizational point of view, the building to be erected on this unique site will enable Shir Hadash to double its Early Childhood Program, as well as conduct a variety of supplemental educational, cultural and social programs for the families of these children. It will become a true center for youth education and programming.
The current rented space for our Early Childhood program is too small, poorly equipped and on the third floor of a non-elevator building – all of which makes building a modern, custom designed facility essential for sustaining (and growing) the impact of the program.