דלג לתוכן ראשי

Madrasa’s story

A social, technological, community-oriented initiative for learning Colloquial Arabic. For everyone, for free.

Our goal is to promote better communication between the different parts of Israeli society. Our project combines online studies through interactive courses and a rich content library, with ongoing community activity in social media and study groups throughout the country.

Madrasa is a social initiative for learning spoken Arabic, for free, using technological tools and community learning.

Over 75,000 registered students learn to communicate through a combination of free online courses, diverse content on various new media channels, and through practicing in speaking groups across the country. In parallel to its public-facing activities, the organization builds and strengthens many strategic collaborations consisting of hybrid courses, workshops and lectures, with the aim of increasing Arabic fluency in central stratas of society.

Our goal is to connect various groups in Israeli society to one another.

Arabic is in fact a much broader common denominator than is commonly thought: It is the mother tongue of 22% of the population; Many Jews in Israel have a familial, cultural and/or historical connection to it; It is the official language of 24 countries Surrounding Israel and the resemblance between it and Hebrew is amazing. However, the vast majority of Jews in Israel (95%!) Do not speak the language and over the years the connection of the Jewish population to it has eroded.  

Madrasa's vast and diverse community is the heart of the organization.

Both pedagogically — through group practice and learning, and socially — by participation in activities and creating momentum that drives the broader social movement: 75,000 secular and religious, Ashkenazi and Mizrahi men and women, with diverse political opinions and of different ages. 250,000 people consume our daily Facebook page content monthly, and tens of thousands are subscribed to many more learning channels.  

Our theory of change consists of five main stages, on which our activity model is based:  

  1. Changing the discourse about the Arabic language and the study of it in the media and social networks, using positive and relevant educational content
  2. Turning hundreds of thousands of Israelis into Arabic students through free and high-quality online courses, language groups across the country as well as hybrid courses (tutorial+experiential learning) and broad educational projects.
  3. Students learn to communicate through unique learning programs that ensure high success rates and practical tools for engaging in conversation.
  4. Creating opportunities for conversation and social infrastructure to implement the knowledge learned
  5. Shifting how we position ourselves in the media through communication, trust and building momentum “Learning that strengthens communication that strengthens learning”

Our strategy combines field activities for the general public with strategic collaborations.

We promote courses and learning avenues for public servants (doctors, clerks, etc), corporations, universities and civil society members. We conduct long-term projects with institutions such as the Israeli Medical Association, the Ministry for Social Equality and the National Union of Israeli Students. As part of the latter collaboration, for example, every year, over 1,000 Jewish students study Arabic using our hybrid courses, with the guidance of fellow Arab students, on more than 40 campuses in the country. Starting in the 2020-2021 school year, our Arabic speaking course will be recognized as credit-worth in the Faculty of Medicine at Tel Aviv University.

Our Team

מיכל רוזן

Michal Rosen

Director of digital media at Madrasa team. Holds a BA in East Asian Studies and Likes languages. Learns Arabic and engages in creating content for networks, graphic design and teaching. practices Yoga and is a creative musician.

גילעד סוויט

Gilad Sevitt

Founder and R&D director. Holds a BA in Sociology, Anthropology, Arabic, and Buddhism. Lives in Jerusalem and is interested in ecology, music, and (obviously) languages.

איה ח׳לאילה

Aia Khalaily

Translator, teacher, and content editor. MA student in International Development, likes to travel around the world and play board games!

דניאל דותן

Daniel Dotan

Lawyer and social activist. Founder and CEO of Madrasa. A football addict, photographer, and writer of cryptic crosswords (only in Hebrew for now), and father of Alma.

יניב גרשון

Yaniv Gershon

Website manager and content writer at madrasa. Holds a BA in Information Science and Arabic at Bar Ilan University. Has knowledge of both Arabic and computer languages. His Holy Trinity is Arabic, technology and social change. Likes board game and healthy food.

עמית בנדור

Amit Bendor

The chief technologist of Madrasa. In daily life he is an expert on artificial intelligence and language processing. Holds an engineering degree from the Technion.

Sondos Alhoot

Sondos Alhoot

Teacher and Presenter in Madrasa. A graduate of the Hebrew University, teaches Arabic and Hebrew in the US, and in "Medabrot" program, works in Snunit as an Arabic field coordinator, translator and content writer and guides Arabic teachers. Her dream to have her own school.

Yiftach Shavit

Yiftach Shavit

Pedagogical director and language activities coordinator. B.A in History and International Relations and M.A in History. Lives in Jerusalem, loves languages and travels and Talmud studies in his free time :-)

Lital Rose

Lital Rose

Director of Collaborations. Bachelor's degree in leadership and policy in education and Israeli studies and a graduate student in administration and public policy. Noga's mother, loves to travel and to write.

Shahaf Barkay

Shahaf Barkay

Administrative manager. Holds a bachelor's degree and a teaching certificate in history. Loves nature, people and animals. Believes that meeting and communication are the basis for creating a society and a good relationship.

Board of Directors

נתנאל כץ

Nathaniel Katz

Chairman of the organization. Organizational psychologist, founder and co-CEO of “Machon Manhigut”. Has worked with Madrasa since it’s beginning

דניאל שפע

Daniel Shefa

Senior editor and producer at the Sports Channel