IsraElite graduate, Yetaesh Ayalo, stands at the front of this group of IDF soldiers, who all received Outstanding Soldier Awards. This photo first appeared in the Israeli press.

A proud and inspiring day for graduates of IsraElite and Yemin Orde Youth Village!

Congratulations to IsraElite graduate, Yetaesh Ayalo, and to Yemin Orde graduate, Raphael Barrer Larrat, who both received an Outstanding Soldier Award in the Israel Defense Forces during Israel’s Independence Day ceremonies in Jerusalem.

This special ceremony takes place each year for 120 outstanding IDF soldiers.  We are so proud that two of our graduates are honored this year at the President of Israel’s residence.  A wonderful accomplishment for all!

Yetaesh’s father arrives from Ethiopia just in time
Yetaesh Ayalo graduated from IsraElite, Yemin Orde's gap year leadership program.
Yetaesh Ayalo receives an Outstanding Soldier Award during Israel Independence Day celebrations.

Yetaesh is now serving her third year as a fighter with the Airborne Rescue and Evacuation Unit. In recognition of Yetaesh’s achievements and leadership, her father received approval to immigrate to Israel from Ethiopia and be at his daughter’s side during the special ceremony. Yetaesh’s advocacy for her father and her leadership were noted extensively in Israeli media.

IsraElite is a gap year leadership program for at-risk and immigrant women. The program empowers young women from the margins of Israeli society with the tools necessary to rise to leadership positions in their national service and beyond.

Yemin Orde graduate enjoyed music and sports at Village
Raphael Barrar Larrat arrived at Yemin Orde from Brazil in 2012.

Raphael immigrated to Israel from Brazil in 2012 and graduated from Yemin Orde Youth Village in 2014. His IDF unit commanders cited Raphael’s excellent leadership, capabilities, motivation, professionalism, values and dedication. He now serves in the Givati Brigrade.

We are proud of these two young leaders who exemplify the Village Way and are role models for their generation.


Yemin Orde’s Gap Year Leadership Programs for Immigrant Men and Women are designed specifically to meet the unique needs of marginalized at-risk youth. These programs operate under the auspices of Village Way Educational Initiatives and are supported through private philanthropy.

Click here to read more about IsraElite and Yemin Orde’s men’s gap year leadership program.



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