The birth rate in Beitar Ilit is one of the highest in the country, and stands at 1,800 annual births. Children comprise approximately 63% of the total population in the city – the highest percentage of children in any city in Israel.
The welfare department serves over 1,255 families, which translates into 6,182 people. Around one fifth of all families in Beitar are assisted by the welfare department.
According to the national program, the number of children at risk is 2,136, between the ages of preschool and high-school.
The department serves the following target populations:
Children and adolescents at risk
• There are certain unique factors which the Beitar Ilit welfare department has to take into consideration:
These unique characteristics present the department staff with constant professional challenges in its daily activities.
Additionally, the social worker's interaction with large families places him\her in a challenging position and necessitates extra intensive work, with particular budgetary adjustment and treatment, despite the budget being extremely tight.
In the passing year, the welfare department has dealt with several families who were coping with complicated health related issues, both physical and mental.
The developmentally delayed population in the city is growing rapidly, and an efficient system to deal with these developments is crucial.
The latest developments have brought about a joint program between the welfare department and the "Marpeh L'Nefesh" mental health clinic for the benefit of the mentally disabled residents. The clinic, which operates dozens of hostels and community programs for the rehabilitation of the mentally unstable, has been open to the requests of the municipality and has made a professional, friendly staff available to the local residents in need of their services.
Despite the relatively low number of elderly in the city, the welfare department is determined to upgrade its services to this important and special sector of society.
The international program for children and youth at risk
department takes an active role in many of the programs.
As of lately, the "Lev Shome'a" organization has undertaken to coordinate all treatments available for youth at risk in the city.
Additionally, the "Nocham" program is in its final stages of implementation; a unique program aimed at assisting Haredi youth who have disconnected themselves from their previously religious lifestyle.