The National Council for the Child presented its 2006 annual statistics report to Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on Wednesday.
The report revealed that more than a third of Israeli children are living under the poverty line. The data showed that in the year 2005, 35 percent of the children living in Israel were considered poor, as opposed to 33 percent in the previous year.
The National Council for the Child's data reported that by the end of 2005 there were 2,326,400 children living in Israel.
Continuing in the patterns of recent year, 2005 also recorded an increase in the percentage of children living in single parent families. Last year, 8.6 percent of children in Israel were living in such families.
The percentage of new immigrant children living in single parent homes is about three times higher than that of Israel born children. Every fourth immigrant child lives in a single parent home.
Children in distressAbout 12.8 percent of Israel's children in 2005 were handicapped or suffering from chronic diseases. Half of the Bedouin youth in recognized Bedouin communities had never visited a dentist, and about one quarter of then had been treated in the last year, as opposed to 43 percent of Arab youth and 57 percent of Jewish youth.
Some 9.9 percent of students ages 12 to 17 have used addictive substances in 2005. With age the percentage of users rises and in the 17 to 18 year-old age group the percentage of substance abusers is 14.3 percent.
A drop in the percentage of teenagers enlisting to the army has also been recorded, out of all the candidates for military service the percentage has dropped to below 78 percent.
In 2005, 77.6 percent of Israeli boys and 59.7 percent of Israeli girls enlisted to the Israeli Defense Force. In 1992 the rate of recruiting to the IDF was 83.7 percent of the boys and 67.4 percent of the girls.
PastimesThe most common leisure activity amongst 82 percent of Israel's youth was visiting malls and shopping centers. Coming in second place are reading books and going out to restaurants (above 50 percent).
The least common pastime for Israel's youth was going to the theatre, art exhibitions, and other entertainment performances (a very small percentage).
80 percent of the Jewish youth aged 12 to 17 own a mobile phone, while 61 percent of this age group surfs the internet.
One quarter of the Israeli youth that surfs the internet spends over six hours a week online, while another quarter spends over 16 hours a week on the net.The most common purposes for which children surf the internet are to download music files and study.
Miri Chason contributed to this story