Today, here in Ramat HaNegev we are working daily to "make the desert bloom" and our success today is for the benefit of tomorrow.  All across the region, we have cutting-edge new projects which will help us meet our goals to preserve, develop, and populate the region. These important initiatives are creating new opportunities for our current residents and guiding us into a bright future for us all.  

Here is a list of some of our important projects which will guide us into the future as a strong, innovative, well-rounded community.

For more information on any and all projects here in Ramat HaNegev please contact:

Daphna Cohen - Director of Resource and Development Dept.

daphna@rng.org.il

New Community/village in Nitzana

Ramat HaNegev Regional Council is building a new village in the near the current community of Nitzana (today, a community of 240 residents).  The plans for the first residential neighborhood in Nitzana of 100 young families units have already been deposited to the Ministry of Construction and Housing. Following official approval, the blueprint for the New community Nitzanit for 250 units will be deposited next!

This project is a substantial pillar in our plan: "Nitzana- from 1,000 residents to 1,000 families" and in the Governmental Acceleration plan we are actively promoting.

Established in 1986 as an educational youth village by Aryeh “Lova” Eliav – a politician, pioneer, and peace activist. The village absorbed and supported Youth Aliyah and new immigrants from Jewish communities around the world. Today, the Nitzana Human Ecosystem represents the complicated Israeli Mosaic with programs for Haredim, Bedouins, Youth Aliyah from former USSR, social activists, Eritrean asylum seekers, and more. The various programs host over 15,000 young visitors annually. The village is an inspiring model for cross-sector collaborations, social cohesion, and innovation. It’s living proof of Reuven Revlins’ vision for ‘Israeli Hope’; for cross-sector collaborations and partnerships between the four Israeli tribes' development and quality of life in Nitzana.

 

 

 

 

The Nitzana Ecological Park

Ramat HaNegev Regional Council is promoting the establishment of the Nitazna Park, an oasis in the heart of the desert- attacking tourists and visitors as well as birdwatchers. The park will be another stage in making the remote and fragile area of Nitzana strong. Nitzana park will be built next to the Ktziot reservoir, using its previous water facilities. The park will be located in the heart of the Nitzana region. The Nitzana Ecological Park is located in the heart of Nitzana. The park will be built on existing ponds that were part of the old wastewater treatment plant and will use some of its existing infrastructures. The proximity of the Nitzana reservoir to the park creates a beautiful ecological sequence:  firstly producing freshwater use for drinking and bathing (by the area’s residents, soldiers, and prisoners), then water is purified in the reclamation facility, and finally the water reuse for Negev agriculture as well as recreation and creation of a balance of nature in the ecological park of Nitzana. 

Due to our local climatic zone conditions, the Nitzana water ponds are a source of attraction to many bird species, some of which are extremely rare. This is attractive to tourists and bird watchers. The planned park draws inspiration from the Agamon Hula – a story of success on an international scale.

New Sports Complex - Regional Council Campus

Ramat HaNegev Regional Council is building a state-of-the-art community sports hall tailored to facilitate sports and other community activities for the entire region. The auditorium is being built within the Ramat HaNegev campus between the regional High School and religious elementary School. Aside from accommodating the students, it will play an important role in connecting the regions' dispersed communities through sporting events and gatherings.

As the Ramat HaNegev community grows, the regional sports hall will play a key factor in connecting our communities. Additionally, it will provide us the opportunity to collaborate with other neighboring regions. Through sports activities and competitions, we will enhance our sense of belonging and strengthen our community – one game at a time, fostering dialogue, and constantly seeking to understand how to turn challenges into opportunities.  

As we Move forward – sustainable living (anywhere) must include sports within a holistic approach of body and mind and to support a stronger shared society. The healthier and happier people are – the more the desert will bloom.

 

 

 

 

New Synagogue - Kfar Retamim

Kfar Retamim is a young & modern religious community in southern Israel. Located in the Negev desert in between Kibutz Revivim and the Bedawin settlement Bir Hadj. They are a highly inclusive dati leumi community and emphasize pluralism, equality, Zionism & Tikon Olam, welcoming and respecting various traditions, practices, and beliefs.  In 2009 eight young families established a new community in the Negev, reviving the (once deserted) village of Retamim. Today, the thriving community includes 110 young families. With over 400 children, they have become the fastest-growing community in the Negev and are joined by approx. 12 new families annually. Within ten years, Kfar Retamim will double itself.

The community's synagogue is the bedrock for their spiritual & social life, whether gathering weekly for Shabbat service, high holidays, life celebrations, lectures, etc., or functioning as a study hall. It's the heart of the community. However, since the population has grown so quickly, they have already outgrown the temporary synagogue. With 110 families and over 400 children, the existing 200 seats are not enough. The lack of suitable common space threatens the community's core values, which wishes to remain united. 

While many congregations in Israel split according to various ethnic and religious divides, reflecting the Israeli mosaic and the different Jewish traditions, at Kfar Retamim, they remain united.  As part of their core values, they insist that the community is united in prayer and inclusive. Finding creative ways to address challenges led by the different traditions, they pray together – and alter the various Nusachim (liturgical traditions); Ashkenaz, Sefard, and Edot Hamizrach. Shifting between traditions & respecting both eastern and western heritage is a unique practice & approach. Additionally, addressing gender-related issues, the planned new synagogue will reflect their decision to respect, include, and invite everyone. Men and Women. 

Center for Environmental Studies - Kadesh Barnea

Pitchat Nitzana lies in one of the most remote areas of Israel, some 90 kilometers south-west of Beer Sheva, along Israel’s border with Egypt. Five communities, belonging to Ramat Hanegev Regional Council comprise the area known as Pitchat Nitzana. The first community that was established in 1977, is Kadesh Barnea. It is the center of the region that gives services to all the neighboring communities, and a key component of the forthcoming demographic growth of 90 new families in the next 6 years. A sixth community, called Nitzanit, is planned to be established within a decade and to add 340 new families to the region.

The Environmental Education Centre will offer courses, seminars, lectures, children afternoon activity, youth movement activity and serve as a child and adult learning center for environmental studies in these subjects:
Renewable energy, Sustainable agriculture, Water Solutions- desalination, brackish water use, Recycle - both domestic and agricultural. The Centre will also operate a recycling facility, Ecological restoration, Combat Desertification, Desert greening. 

The 600 sq. Meters building will have a lecture hall, classrooms, a library, and seminar rooms and will be located at the center of Kadesh Barnea, near the kindergartens, commercial center, and other amenities.
 

 

 

Agri-Tech Innovation Center - FRONTIER

Ramat HaNegev is now one of the largest and most successful agricultural regions in Israel. It covers 4.2 million dunams (1.050 million acres) accounting for 22% of Israel’s total land area. We master harnessing brackish water for farming - our desalination plant produces 3.5 million cubic meters of high-quality water available for local communities and in agriculture. This allows to $177M  total annual vegetable output (70% of the total produce goes for exports, primarily to Europe and the US).  Cow-sheds in our region is also known as the best in the world; utilizing the most updated and sophisticated machinery, they produce in avg. of 20 million liters of milk annually.   
Now, The Agricultural R&D center wants to spread it's knowledge, grow it's impact and become a major player in the race to solve one of the world's most challenging threat. Desertification.  
Join us in utilizing Ramat-Hanegev agricultural R&D center's achievements and turning it into an international knowledge base and innovative desert Agri-Tech center - FRONTIER.  
In the long-term, FRONTIER will accommodate and facilitate advanced technological research projects in a vast range of fields: Efficient water usage and irrigation, solving problems such as soil diseases and pests, development of new products and the acclimatization of existing products, development of agricultural techniques and more.  In addition, FRONTIER will also be conducting and overseeing international projects in the field of highly advanced agriculture.  

 

New Regional Clinic - Regional Council Campus

Establishing a regional clinic, which will provide health services to the residents of the area (which is defined as the remote periphery), is an essential step towards significant demographic growth and making qualitative health services accessible to all the residents of the area. The health services currently provided to the residents of Ramat HaNegev Regional Council are insufficient, mainly due to a lack of space which has resulted in a reduction of the personnel working at the clinic. In fact, the population of the area is growing significantly and is expected to grow by approximately 30% in the next 5 years. This fact leads to two main ramifications.

The first one is that the residents of the area receive limited and insufficient health services; and the second one is that it constitutes a real obstacle for the council to attract new residents, an essential move aimed at strengthening and developing the Negev and the State of Israel.

The size of the building to be constructed will be 908m2 (9773.63ft2). It will provide a medical answer to all the residents living within the Council’s jurisdiction. The building will suit the health needs of the population which lives in the remote periphery and enjoys significant demographic growth. It will enable the provision of medical services that are not currently provided, due to the lacking infrastructure of the existing building. The establishment of a new regional clinic constitutes a lever for enhancing the concept of providing modern health services.

The clinic will be planned and operated by “Clalit Health Services” (Kupat Holim Clalit - CHS), which is Israel’s largest and most veteran health service and health insurance organization.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Har HaNegev Search and Rescue Center - Midreseht Ben Gurion

Har HaNegev Search and Rescue Team is the region's first responders in emergency operations throughout the Negev Desert. The Unit's volunteers provide search, rescue & evacuation aid for residents and tourists. The Center will supply the team with the required space for ongoing activity, training for the volunteers, training programs for recruits, and implementing educational seminars and programs.

The Rescue Search Team Center will also serve the Local "Tsachi" team providing the community with the necessary security and first response emergency services.

During these days of managing a global pandemic, the Unit has taken upon itself to expand its initial mandate and provide the needed assistance in dealing with Covid19. The Unit has become inseparable to the Council's regional program to stop the infection chain and protect the region's population, assisting with expert epidemiologic investigations. Going forward, the Unit depends on the establishment of a proper facility to expand their support in the fight against Covid19 and equip them with appropriate training and operational facilities.