The Nitzana Educational Community in the Negev was founded with the assistance of the Jewish Agency in 1986, by Israel Prize winner Lova Eliav. Ever since its creation, Nitzana has been committed to education and emphasizes values such as Zionism, pluralism, self empowerment , a love for Israel and specifically the Negev Desert, while stressing the importance of sustainability, ecology and conservation. The main idea behind the community from the beginning has been to teach Israeli Youth and young Jews from the Diaspora about the Negev Desert as a "Living Desert", that contains great potential and endless settlement and development possibilities.
A cutting-edge desert community and educational center that fosters environmentalism, tolerance, and self-confidence. Nitzana is home to many Jewish Agency Social Activism projects.
At the Nitzana Educational Eco-Village, young people of all backgrounds from Israel and elsewhere come together for educational experiences that change them, and the environment, for the better.
Located in the western Negev, Nitzana integrates environmentalism and ecology into its programs, which include a wide array of social activism programs, such as:
- The Derech Eretz Mechinah (post-high school service-learning) where Israelis advance their leadership skills and communal responsibility before joining their national service.
- Nitzana Solar Park, a collection of scientific installations that draws thousands of schoolchildren each year to learn about renewable energy and recycling.
- A rehabilitation center for children recovering from trauma and illness.
- Tikkun Olam, a boarding school for refugee teenagers from Eritrea, with its own educational team, run in partnership with the Ministry of Education.
- MIR-Selah, an academic preparatory course and Masa Israel Journey program for potential olim from the former Soviet Union