Some of the new immigrants who arrived on October 24, 2017
Some of the new immigrants who arrived on October 24, 2017Olivier Fitoussi

Two hundred twenty seven new immigrants (olim) from Belarus, France, Russia and Ukraine arrived in Israel during Israel Aliyah (immigration) Week. 174 of the new olim arrived on the Tuesday, as the Knesset celebrated Yom Ha'aliyah (Immigration Day).

The new Israeli citizens join over 10,000 others who were brought to Israel by International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ) since the organization began leading its own aliyah (immigration to Israel) activities in 2014.

IFCJ has worked for 25 years to bring a total of 730,000 new immigrants to Israel, since the first days of the Soviet Jewry movement. Initially, IFCJ worked together with other agencies, and helped launch the aliyah organization Nefesh B’Nefesh. Today the organization is active in 26 countries, and provides pre-trip seminars, free flights, and post-arrival financial aid for Jews facing economic hardship. Many of the immigrants decided to move to Israel as a result of the rising anti-Semitism and security threats in their locales.

“We are proud to greet so many new immigrants, specifically this week when Israel celebrates Yom Ha'aliyah (Immigration Day),” IFCJ Founder and President Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein said. “There is no better way to mark this day and this week than by wishing a hearty ‘bruchim habaim (welcome) to the new immigrants who arrive here.”

The new immigrants will move to cities and towns around the country, including Ashkelon, Bat Yam, Haifa, Netanya and others. IFCJ provides each adult immigrant with an $800 voucher and each child with a $400 voucher, and makes in-home visits to assess and meet the immigrants' further needs for six months after they arrive in Israel. The organization helps immigrants purchase appliances and furnishings, choose schools for their children, and more. IFCJ also gives seminars on preparing for life in Israel, detailing practical information on acclimating to Israeli life.

These benefits packages supplement what every immigrant receives from Israel’s Ministry of Absorption.

“Immigrants make up the past, present and future of the Jewish state,” Eckstein said. “They are our VIPs, who contribute substantially to Israel’s economy, education, science, culture, and sports.”

“We will not rest until every Jew who wishes to immigrate to Israel is here!”