This was copied from Nefesh b'Nefesh yahoogroup today, Jan. 28, 2008
Type of community and size: Moshav with a current community of 100 families- expanding in the next two years to 400 families.
Location: Located 5 minutes south of Kiryat Gat. It is part of the Shafir Regional council.
Religious life: All Orthodox of varying levels, with a strong Torah approach to life. The expansion is only being sold to the religious public.
Age range: The current residents are mostly in their 40's and 50's,but the expansion will bring young families in their 20's and 30's
Number of English-speaking Olim: Very few, but there will be a growing number buying in the new area.
Accessibility to places of employment: Very accessible. The nearby industrial park in Kiryat Gat has tremendous opportunities for employment, especially with Intel’s center located there. Three hospitals are within a 45 minute drive.
Medical care: Currently Clalit
Commercial establishments: No major shopping in the moshav itself. Kiryat Gat, 5 minutes away, is a city with everything one would need.
Climate: Warm and dry with little humidity
Contacts: Mendi Kramarski firstname.lastname@example.org; www.bemuna.co.il/english/project.asp?id=47
Housing availability: The expansion will have private homes that the owner can design as well as a choice of pre-designed homes. Plots are 500 square meters (half a dunam).
Even Shmuel was founded over 30 years ago, and its 100 member families have excellent relations. The expansion will bring in another 300 families, who will be incorporated into the current life of the moshav. The upcoming community is not being viewed as a separate community, rather as part of the growing, existing one. New members will have to be approved by an acceptance committee. The new housing units will be ready for occupancy in the summer of 2010. The very warm population in the moshav tends to be Dati Leumi Torani. The moshav is part of the Partnership 2000 program with Chicago.
Commerce and Health Services
Along with the new expansion will come a shopping center with a supermarket and a variety of stores.
Health care clinic Clalit is located on the moshav.
There are 3 hospitals in relatively close proximity to the moshav: Barzali Hospital in Ashkelon is a 20 minute ride away, Soroka Hospital is a 30 minute drive (and has direct bus service), and Kaplan Hospital is a 40 minute drive.
In nearby Kiryat Gat there is a professional theatre that attracts high level performances from around the country. They also have several malls and many restaurants and eateries.
There is a commitment by the Department of Education to open a new gan (pre-school) if any gan reaches 35 students. There is no fee for pre-nursery, nursery or kindergarten, all located on the moshav. There are lots of trips provided throughout the year.
There is currently one elementary school that will be moved into a modern facility within two years. Construction is already underway. It is simply called Beit Sefer Yisodi Even Shmuel- Even Shmuel Elementary school! The principal is already thinking of ways to help English speakers integrate.
English is taught beginning in first grade.
See school database for more information.
Special education is available to children in Even Shmuel. There is a center to assist pre-school children with special therapies - both physical and psychological - in Achuzat Etrog (approx. 20 min. away). There is a special education program in Mercaz Shapira (20 minutes away) as well as a center for early childhood education. Psychological services are offered within the Even Shmuel Elementary School as needed.
There is a girl's high school located on the moshav that is nationally acclaimed. It has 2 divisions: 7-8th grades (no dorming option), and 9-12th grades (everyone dorms). There are 400 girls in this school.
Middle and High school aged boys tend to go to the yeshiva high school in Kiryat Gat.
There is a chabad school, grades 1-12 in Kiryat Gat, and two charedi yishuvim (Alumim and Kemomiyut) which offer independent charedi education nearby, for grades 1-8.
Many residents of the moshav are in education and work at schools in the vicinity. Intel center is in Kiryat Gat, 5 minutes away, as well as other hi-tech companies.
Members of the community also work in Beer Sheva, Ashkelon and Tel Aviv.
Ulpan for adults is nearby and might be moved to Even Shmuel if the need arises. There is an ulpan for kids within the school- they have a strong history of helping kids being absorbed into the system.
The Misrad haKlitah is in Kiryat Gat, 5 minutes away.
There is an acceptance committee, and once accepted, new comers will be given an adoptive family.
There is a committee already in place to make sure that all new families will become part of the community life on the moshav.
Community Services & Institutions
There is a sports hall that has a variety of activities.
A day and evening kollel affords the community a chance to learn within the kollel, or to hear shiurim from its members in other community settings.
There is a Bnai Akiva with separate boys and girls divisions. There are also many after school Torah programs offered for the children.
The expansion will have another shul built within it.
There is both a women's and men's mikvah on the moshav, as well as the Regional Library.
Even Shmuel is a 5 minute drive to Kiryat Gat, and a 35 minute drive from the Beit Shemesh area. There is a train in Kiryat Gat.
There is a bus every half an hour to Beer Sheva which is 20 minutes away. Tel Aviv is an hour bus drive away, and Jerusalem is a 1 hour and 15 minute trip by car, and a little bit longer by public buses.
Highway 6 is being extended to Kiryat Gat which will decrease the amount of travel time to the center and Northern parts of the country.
There will be a total of 200 new units added to the moshav. Sales for these units began in Dec. 2006. There are privately designed homes, as well as pre-designed models. Contact information is www.bemuna.co.il/english/project.asp?id=47