General: The kibbutz was
established at the end of 1931 and was named for Jan Christian Smuts, a
former Prime Minister of South Africa. He was an ardent Zionist sympathizer
and one of the first politicians who supported the creation of the state of
is a secular kibbutz in the north of Israel, about half an hour from Haifa.
Today about 950 people work on the kibbutz.
the kibbutz, there is a big plastic factory (Palram),
an herb and spices factory, avocado fields, orchards, other fields for
crops, video studio, cow barn for dairy and beef, welding and carpentry
shops, and more.
the convenience of the Kibbutz members and Ulpan
students, there is dining room, supermarket, ATM, clinic (with insurance Clalit), salon, physical therapy, soccer field,
basketball court, tennis court, pub, etc. There is a fitness park located a
few minute's walk from the Ulpan. There is also a synagogue at neighboring
kibbutz, Kfar Maccabi.
History: In April 1948, the Druze began an
offensive attack on Ramat Yohanan. There was a
hard battle at the kibbutz against the Druze based in the city of Shfaram. The Druze attacked Ramat Yohanan
and other neighboring kibbutzim in order to try to take over the roads
leading to Haifa. Casualties were
suffered from both sides. With the help of the Hagana,
the battle stopped at Ramat Yohanan and a
non-aggression treaty was signed with the Druze. Throughout the kibbutz, there are scattered
defense towers and hidden stashes of weapons that
were used by the kibbutz to defend itself in the War of Independence.
Transportation: The kibbutz is located about 2
kilometers from the city of Kiryat Ata and about
25 kilometers from Haifa. The types of transportation in the area include:
bus, metronit, and shared taxis from Kiryat Ata to the Krayot and
the central bus station Lev Hamifratz. At Lev Hamifratz,
there is also a train station with trains that go all over Israel.
Ulpan works in joint effort with the Jewish
Agency, Nefesh B’Nefesh,
Project MASA, Progressive Zionist Caucus (Kibbutz Program Center) and the
ministry of education. The
curriculum for the studies is determined by the Ministry of Education, as
well as the days off for Israeli holidays.
the end of the Ulpan, the Ministry of Education
administers to all students a written and oral exam. Students will receive
a certificate of completion.
Ulpan starts twice a year (in March and
February). The students come from all over the world and are between the
ages of 18-30. Some of the students are tourists and rest
of the students are new immigrants, totaling about 45 students all
together in each group.
students live on the kibbutz, study Hebrew in the Ulpan
three days a week and work on the kibbutz three days a week for 8 hours per
day, to contribute to part of the living expenses.
the Ulpan, the students and kibbutz members often
develop good connections, especially with the younger kibbutz members.
Ulpan students are invited to take part in some
of the kibbutz activities. The students celebrate the Israeli holidays with
the kibbutz members (and have an additional celebration in the Ulpan for some of the holidays), Kabbalat
Shabbat on Friday night in the dining room, musical performances, parties,
– There are three students per room. In each room, there is a refrigerator,
air conditioner, bathroom and shower, desk, closet, etc.
Studies – There are three
level of Hebrew: Level A for beginners, Level B for people that speak basic
Hebrew and Level C for the more those that are advanced. Upon arriving to
the Ulpan, each student will be tested so that
their level can be determined.
Work – Usually students in
the Ulpan work in the supermarket, plastic
factory, landscaping, dining room, laundry, kindergarten, or spice
factory. Working helps pays for part
of the students’ stay in the Ulpan. The jobs are
decided on by the Ulpan staff based on scheduling
and need in the work places.
Meals – Ulpan
students eat breakfast and lunch in the dining room together with the
kibbutz members. They eat dinner in the club room at the Ulpan. The club is open 24 hours a day and has hot/cold
water fountain, air conditioning, TV and Wi-Fi.
Laundry –Once a week the
laundry will be done by the laundry service on the kibbutz
Trips – During the Ulpan, the students take organized trips to: Golan
Heights, Jerusalem, Yad VaShem,
and a two day trip to the Negev. The
trips are planned with a professional tour guide in several languages.
students go to Gadna at an army base for five
days. The base staff will take the students through an experimental week of
army life, as is done with Israeli high school students. The students will go to Ganda based on permission by the army and availability
at a base.
program includes living arrangements, laundry service, meals, trips, Wi-Fi,
Why come to the Ulpan?
The opportunity to
start life in Israel smoothly and easily, without worrying about
will give you more confidence when starting your life after the Ulpan
Working on the
kibbutz will help you understand the habits that will be expected from
you at work in Israel
volunteer on a kibbutz where members still work together in a collective
You will get to
know Israeli society and the kibbutz society and allow you to make your
first connections with people in Israel
We will help you
overcome the difficulties of the Israeli beuracracy
you need to go through as a new immigrant – ID cards, health insurance,
bank account, driver’s license
the landscape and history of Israel
Chance to learn
Hebrew in a quiet and relaxing environment where you don’t have other
worries and distractions so that you can integrate more easily after the Ulpan
interested in going to the army,
we will help you get information and connect you with the recruiting
office and programs for volunteers from outside of Israel
The Ulpan studies will give you the opportunity to learn
to speak, as well as read and write in Hebrew
Get to know young
people from all over the world, share this special experience together,
and leave with great memories you will never forget
experience what is means to live in a “kibbutz,” something special and
unique to Israel
Learn about the
Israeli holidays and celebrate them together with us
a Shaliach (emissary) from the Jewish Agency.
Agency Global Center: http://www.jewishagency.org/aliyah
Nefesh B’Nefesh: http://www.nbn.org.il/
Jewish Agency subsidizes your time at the Ulpan
(also for Returning Minors and Immigrant Citizens) so that the program is
very worth your while. Two weeks after your arrival at the Ulpan, you will receive a payment slip for a total of
4,500 Shekels to be paid to the Jewish Agency.
contact the Kibbutz Program Center or the MASA Project for costs of the Ulpan, scholarships, and directions for how to
register, including the correct forms to fill out.
is a once in a life time experience. We receive email from tourist that
came to the Ulpan 20 and thirty years ago that
remember their time in the Ulpan and, after so
many years, still has a special spot in their hearts.
1. I know that the
state gives new immigrants an Ulpan for free. Why
do I need to pay 4,500 shekels?
The government gives only the studies at
the Ulpan for free. If you chose to live in the
city, you would pay for rent, food, electricity, water, laundry, etc. The 4,500 shekel nominal fee is the
excess after your working hours and the Jewish Agency contribute to the
majority of the cost.
2. After I arrive
at the Ulpan and take the test to determine my
Hebrew level, will there be an opportunity during the course of the program
to change from one level to another?
Changing levels is allowed on the
recommendation of the teacher and with the approval of the Ulpan manager.
3. I made Aliyah.
Where do I go when the Ulpan is over?
In order to reduce uncertainty about the
future, about one month and a half before the end of the Ulpan, we’ll start to help the new immigrants find
housing and an employment solution.
4. Is it required
to go to class, work and the trips?
Yes. In this program, we require students
to be serious, in class and at work. The trips are educational tours (in
addition to being a fun experience) so all students will participate.
5. What training
to the teachers in the Ulpan have?
All of the teachers received their
certification from the ministry of education, which is also the
organization that supervises the curriculum.
6. How many days off can I take during the five months of
the Ulpan? How much free time will I have each
day after class or work?
During the Ulpan, you can take four days off plus the days off we
will have from the holidays. You will have a lot of time each day after you
finish your responsibilities for the day, except for activities that will
be planned from time to time that take place in the evening.
7. Is it possible to visit family and friends that live in
Israel during the week?
You may only go to visit friends and
family on days off or after work/class. You can also go to visit on Friday
afternoon and return on Saturday nights to the Ulpan.
8. Will I need to work on the weeks?
Like all the kibbutz members, every few
weeks you will take a turn to work in the Ulpan
or the kibbutz on the weekend. This work will be a maximum of two hours on
Friday or Saturday night, in the dining room or in the Ulpan.
9. I want to volunteer on the kibbutz without learning
Hebrew. Is this possible?
No. Participation in the program requires
What is the normal daily schedule in the Ulpan?
Three days a week you study Hebrew from
8:00am to 1:00pm plus another hours and a half after lunch. Three days a
week you work from about 7:00am to 3:00pm. The hours of work might be
slightly different depending on the work place.
11. I am interested in coming as a tourist. Is there an
opportunity for a scholarship?
Jewish tourists are invited to look into
what is available to you before coming to the Ulpan.
Please check with the Kibbutz Program Center.
12. Where can I find a list of documents I need to register
to the Ulpan?
If you are making Aliyah—the
Jewish Agency. If you are a tourist—the Kibbutz Program Center. Do not
forget to tell them that you want to sign up to Ramat Yohanan.
13. I registered for the Ulpan.
What should I bring with me? How do I get to the Ulpan?
After you received confirmation that you
are registered, please send us your email address and we will send you all
the details you will need to know before you arrive at the Ulpan.
14. I am coming to the Ulpan as a
tourist and received a visa only for three months. Is it possible to
Towards the end if the visa, we will help
you make an appointment with the Ministry of Interior to ask them for an
In order to see pictures and videos, we
encourage you to send us a friend request on Facebook
to Kibbutz Ulpan Ramat Yohanan.
Please call between the hours of: 8:00 am
to 5: oo pm (IST, GMT +2) to Keren
Shahar, Ulpan Manager
+972 4-8459219 or +972 52-3662219