Merhavim regional council - General Information
Merhavim Local Council was established in the north western Negev in 1951.
The regional council lies on 145,000 acres of land and includes 15 moshavim, one community village, an educational youth village and the IDF
air force base, Hazerim.
Their 13,000 residents.The human tapestry of Merhavim is diverse and includes the founding generation, some born in Israel and others who
immigranted from all over the world, along with the second and third generation who continue the heritage of settling the Negev, along side new families who join our community from all over the country. In the heart of the local council is the educational campus which includes the regional schools, the "Aleh Negev" rehabilitation center that provides a warm and welcoming home for people with special needs, "Ma'avarim"-an employment bureau for the local residents and a community center.
There are also two industrial parks, one in Maboim and one in Ofakim, as well as the "NAM" industrial park that is a joint venture of Merhavim regional council, Sdot Negev regional council and the town of Netivot. The council's financial corporation and "Moshvei Hanegev Ltd", the largest agricultural company in the Middle East, owned cooperatively by the villages in the region, are the most significant financial arms of the council.
Merhavim's villages are founded on agricultural activity and enjoy beautiful and green open spaces, with small hills and streams, wild foliage and wide open planes. The pleasant weather induces a sense of peace and calm and attracts many visitors.
In recent years, new and diverse tourist attractions have sprung up in Merhavim. Bike and foot trails have been set up, guest houses, bed and breakfast, wineries, art galleries, cheese manufactures, spas and delicious home cooked meals are all offered to tourists.
There are nature reserves within the council's area; Eshkol National Park, the Besor River nature reserve, the Grar River nature reserve and more.
In recent years the villages in our region have been under rocket attacks from the Gaza strip several times. The council is prepared for emergency situations and operates community projects to help deal with the threat. We have additional plans to further improve the council's response during emergency situations and we are working with other partners to execute these plans.
Despite the fragile security situation, our villages enjoy demographic, financial and social growth. Road #6 and the new railroad being built bring the periphery much closer to the center and encourage young families to move south. The region has tremendous potential for settlement, agriculture, financial development, employment and tourism and we are working to fulfill this potential.
We hope to develop the council and its residents by offering excellent and diverse services in all areas of daily living. We hope to maintain the rural country lifestyle and strengthen the community while continually striving to improve the quality of life within our council.