President Shimon Peres greeted 234 North American immigrants, including 85 new soldiers, on this summer's second Nefesh b'Nefesh charter aliyah flight Tuesday morning.
The new group includes 31 families with 70 children, the youngest of whom is five months old. The oldest new immigrant is 94 years old. There also are 103 singles arriving.
Israel’s newest citizens include professionals from various backgrounds. One of them is an athlete, and others include a Jewish lawyer, engineer, rabbi, travel agent and computer programmer.
They hail from almost half of all of the 50 American states, including Tennessee, Virginia, Arizona, Indiana and Kansas, as well as those states with a higher concentration of Jews. Several Canadians from Toronto, Vancouver and Montréal also are on the plane.
They will be living throughout the country, from Afula, located southwest of Tiberias, to Be’er Sheva in the Negev.
The first summer flight, also chartered by the Nefesh B’Nefesh organization and the Jewish Agency, brought 232 Jews to Israel.
This summer, Nefesh B’Nefesh and the Jewish Agency will assist over 2,500 Jews to make Aliyah from the United States and Canada.
"The series of flights with new immigrants arriving from North America in the coming weeks expresses to my joy the fruitful partnership that exists between the Jewish Agency for Israel and Nefesh B’Nefesh,” according to Jewish Agency chairman Natan Sharansky. “
The summer Olim will be arriving on three charter and eight group Aliyah flights in addition to hundreds of others who will arrive on other flights. By the end of summer 2010, Nefesh B’Nefesh together with the Jewish Agency will have brought a total of 44 charter and 56 group Aliyah flights.