Equal In Uniform
AKIM, founded in 1951 by a group of Israeli parents, is the largest and most comprehensive provider of programs and services for the intellectually disabled — serving 34,000 children and adults throughout the country.
“Our ability to influence meaningfully how the state of Israel will look in the future, means introducing the concept of integration,” according to AKIM chairman, Gen. (res.) Ami Ayalon.
‘Equal in Uniform’ project allows everyone to serve. The IDF and military service are among the core values of Israeli society. For most Israeli citizens service in the IDF is a foundational experience. The IDF believes that it is important that intellectually disabled people should also have this experience, within the limits of their abilities and needs.
The encounter between the intellectually disabled and the general population serving in the IDF, commanders and soldiers alike, will have the result that broad sectors in Israeli society will be exposed to mentally retarded people; this will hopefully bring about a change in attitude.