AKIM Programs

IDF & National Service

As part of AKIM Israel’s vision of inclusion, it established a unique collaboration with one of the greatest tools for integration and solidarity in the Israeli society, the Israeli Defense Force (IDF).

Equal In Uniform

Inclusion Not Exemption

Army Service is a crucial cornerstone to one’s Israeli identity, reinforcing connections to the land, enhancing camaraderie, and building leadership skills and values. The Equal in Uniform program was thoughtfully designed to enable young Israelis with disabilities to engage in and benefit from national service, achieving their personal goals as meaningful and valued participants in this life-altering rite of passage.

In a unique and innovative partnership with the Israeli Defense Forces, AKIM launched the Equal in Uniform program in 2006 with just two brave and eager soldiers. This groundbreaking program now operates on 46 bases with 180 active volunteers in the IDF and 1,100 alumni.

Previously, young adults with disabilities were simply exempt from national service requirements, rendering them outsiders. Understanding that our differences don’t divide us – they bind us, AKIM took action to eliminate this cultural shortcoming and create equality in service. AKIM advocated to advance the desires of these young adults for: inclusion, not exemption.

The program has become a catalyst for change along all planes of Israeli culture, advancing AKIM’s mission to create an “equal in everything” society. By virtue of shared experience, serving shoulder to shoulder, service members with and without disabilities bond over their likenesses and learn about their differences. EIU members illuminate the challenges for those living with disabilities while simultaneously highlighting their capacity to overcome them.

Togetherness in service, creates togetherness in life. Unit members serve and grow together, becoming more sensitive empathic adults – ultimately fostering inclusiveness and tolerance in Israeli society. Nearly two decades since its inception, our alumni have graduated with strengthened national and personal pride, marketable technical skills, a sense of confidence and acceptance amongst their peers.

But AKIM doesn’t stop there…

Upon completion of their service, AKIM transitions graduates into independent and fulfilling civilian life, providing employment preparation utilizing the valuable skills gained in service. With our support, over 90% of alumni obtain fulfilling employment in the free job market, becoming valued and forward facing members within their communities.

Successful Service Starts with You!
Support the Equal in Uniform program and say “yes” to inclusion.

Equal in Uniform is kindly supported by:

AKIM’s Programs & Services

With your support, our programs and services act to directly enrich, influence and enhance the lives of Israelis with IDD and their families. We work at the national and local levels to bring our caring person-centered approach directly into communities across Israel.