About us -

Who

world map Kibbutz Reshafim was founded in 1948 by Jews from Roumania, Poland and Palestine, many of whom had been in Concentration and Labour Camps, had been interned in Cyprus by the British or had entered the country illegally. A group of Eastern1 and Argentinian Jews joined in the 50's. From the sixties onwards the main population growth was a result of the second generation chosing to stay on.

In 2000 there were about 290 members and 200 children living on the kibbutz. The population has shrunk a bit since then. In 2010 it counted about 420 persons. On the positive side there were new members and candidates for membership again and in 2012 for instance 17 new members with 14 children joined the kibbutz.

Reshafim is a non religious kibbutz without synagogue or mikve. On Sabbaths and religious holidays people do not work in general, but there is no religious observance of any kind in public. People are of course free to fast on fasting days or not eat hametz during Passover, but cannot expect others to do the same.

Of the erstwhile socialist ardour little is left. Many people are no longer members of any labour union. May Day is not observed and Red Flags on public buildings are only hoisted as a personal initiative.

 

Countries of Origin of Kibbutz Members, 2010

  • Roumania
  • Poland
  • Germany
  • Soviet Union
  • Chekoslovakia
  • Palestine
  • Argentina
  • Peru
  • Chile
  • Switzerland
  • France
  • Turkey
  • Syria
  • Egypt
  • Canada
  • Uruguay
  • The Netherlands
  • Sweden
  • Lebanon
  • Israel
  • Spain
  • Morocco
  • Yemen
  • Zimbabwe
As time passes and members leave the kibbutz or die, the number of countries of origin declines.

 

Demographics

During the economic crisis in the 1990s and early 2000s a few dozen members abandonned ship and for a while our future looked bleak. When we came to an agreement with the banks about consolidating our debts our situation became tenable again. The plans for future development ripened: new rules for membership were established, making the kibbutz more attractive to outsiders. Moreover a new settlement "Shlaffim", affiliated with Reshafim and the neighbouring religious kibbutz Shluhot, was founded on lands belonging to the two kibbutzim, which would receive many municipal services from the established kibbutzim.

Since 2010, when the ban on new memberships was lifted, 58 people have bought or built homes here (December 2016) after having been accepted as members. Most of them have young children and the children's houses, which had become depleted are fully occupied again, a new kindergarden has been built and three more day care centres are planned.

New members since 2010:
Year2010201120122013201420152016
New members7715410114

Skeletons in the Cupboard

 


1) A bit of a misnomer: Many "Eastern" Jews actually come from further west than most European Jews. Sephardim (Spaniards) would be a better name, as most North African and many Middle Eastern Jews are descendants of Spanish Jews, expelled in 1492.

 

Back to About Us

 


Site Map - Main Index - When - Where - Why - How - Feedback

 

2000
Updates: August 2013, January 2017