Who are we?

We are a Jewish Zionist Youth Movement that has been operating since 1930.

We operate in 2 major Kenim (centers) – Johannesburg and Cape Town – and aim to educate Jewish Southern African youth on our three pillars: Zionism, Judaism, and Service to Humanity. We want Jewish Southern African youth to prioritise and actualise these pillars in their lives and live by these values. We run several programs and events for Jewish youth (ages 9-24) throughout the year, ranging from weekly meetings, to mini-machanot over weekends, to Israel (and other international) tours, to our major end-of year Machaneh.  Through high quality and exciting informal education, we are not only able to give our Chaverim fun and engaging experiences, but experiences that are insightful and eye-opening. We offer life changing encounters to our Chaverim and build Jewish leaders of the future – and have been doing so for 93 years.

What do we beleive in?

Our ideology is built upon three core pillars, as well as our Hagshama (fulfilment):


Being part of the Jewish community is a beautiful thing and we aim to inspire our Chaverim to agree. We showcase our rich culture and heritage, and educate on Jewish values like Kehilla (community) and Tikkun Olam (improving the world through action). We also consider ourselves to be inclusive and pluralistic in our expression of Judaism, which means all Jews are welcome: whether secular or observant, orthodox or reform. We are an alternative vehicle for Jewish expression, where Chaverim can explore and express their own Judaism with no bounds. 


HDSA is proudly Zionist and supports the self-determination of Jews in Midinat Yisrael. More specifically, we are a Left-Wing Zionist organisation meaning we engage with the history and development of Israel through the lens of principles like Kvutsa (communal life) and social justice. We believe Israel is the central physical, cultural, and spiritual space for the Jewish people. That means we support Aliyah but also acknowledge that Israel demands participation from diasporic Jewish communities. It is therefore our duty to educate on the history and on goings in Israel to shape it into a peaceful state and ideal society.


Equality and Service to Humanity:

HDSA envisions a world where equality is the fundamental value governing humanity; a world based on the values of freedom, peace, social justice, democracy, compassion, respect, sharing, co-operation and mutual responsibility. We hold closely to our hearts the Jewish principle of Shivyon Erech Ha’adam (the belief that all humans are born with equal value), which compels us to create a just society.  The community of HDSA is one in which the value of equality is central, and we view our own community as a model for a better world. 

Hagshama (fulfilment)

The movement believes in a dual Hagshama: Social Activism within Israel and Southern Africa are each the full embodiment of HDSA’s ideological process. We encourage our Chaverim to face life inspired by the ideals upheld by the movement.  Hagshama is not a final goal but an ongoing process. 

Like What You See?

That is just the tip of the ice berg of what we stand for – the only way to truly experience Habo Magic is by coming to our events or programs

Aleh Ve’Hagshem
Rise up and Fulfil