One of ELEM’s central tenets is to invest in the youth of Israel in order to invest in the future of Israel. Derech Hamelech (The King's Road) does so by integrating the youth into normative frameworks with assistance of a significant positive adult mentor. Derech Hamelech is a program for youth at severe risk in the community. It is based on the cooperation and collaboration with various services in the community. There is constant contact with the youth services in the community – mutual referrals, training and guiding. For example, a number of youth were referred by the local youth probation services.
Derech Hamelech reaches out to youth at risk in the community and helps them to develop skills, attain a job and begin a career path. The program enables them to ‘break the mold’ of delinquency and become healthy, functioning members of society, thanks to the mentorship of volunteer community members. For youth who have grown up without the positive influence of a healthy authority figure, working with a volunteer mentor can be transformative and catalyze personal growth and self-improvement. Derech Hamelech participants complete the program with new skills and capabilities; a sense of self-worth, a sense of self success; and, sometimes for the first time, a positive future on the horizon. By helping delinquent youth transform themselves into educated members of society, Derech Hamelech improves not only the lives of the individual participants, but improves the social and economic reality of the Ramle community.