This week, Nefesh B’Nefesh (NBN), in cooperation with Israel’s Ministry of Aliyah and Integration and the Jerusalem Municipality, hosted nearly 300 new olim (immigrants to Israel) from around the world who made aliyah to Jerusalem this year.
Well-known Israeli singer, Rami Kleinstein, who made aliyah from the US with his family at eight years old, came to celebrate the olim with a special musical performance.
The event took place at the Nefesh B’Nefesh Aliyah Campus in the heart of Jerusalem and included special panels in four languages: English, Russian, French, and Spanish. The panel members included veteran olim and representatives from various aliyah organizations throughout the country, and discussed the rights and benefits to which olim are entitled following their aliyah.
Several distinguished guests and dignitaries attended the event: Shmuel Marciano, Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem; Zev Gershinsky, Executive Vice President of Nefesh B’Nefesh; Pini Glinkewitz, Director of the Aliyah and Integration Authority in the Jerusalem Municipality; Katya Tov, Jerusalem Area Director at the Ministry of Aliyah and Integration; and Ziva Avrahami, Director of Ulpan Etzion and Representative from the Jewish Agency for Israel.
“The olim who have settled in Jerusalem have established a wonderful community, and we must continue to nurture and invest in their well-being,” said Moshe Lion, Mayor of Jerusalem. “So far, more than 3,300 people from all over the world have made aliyah to Israel and settled in Jerusalem. I congratulate all the institutions working to encourage aliyah, and I hope that the new year will bring many more olim to Israel.”
“This is the second consecutive year that we are hosting the welcoming event for the local olim community who made aliyah from all over the world and have chosen to establish Jerusalem as their home,” remarked Rabbi Yehoshua Fass, Co-Founder and Executive Director of Nefesh B’Nefesh. “We are honored to give these olim a warm Israeli welcome, together with the Mayor of Jerusalem, Mr. Moshe Lion, and Pini Glinkewitz, Director of the Aliyah and Integration Authority in the Jerusalem Municipality, who have placed aliyah to Jerusalem at the utmost importance.”
According to Nefesh B’Nefesh, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary, Jerusalem is consistently the leading destination among North American olim. The organization also reported that from the start of 2022, nearly 900 olim from the US and Canada made aliyah to Jerusalem, and they are expecting another 1,100 to arrive by the end of the year. The leading occupations among Jerusalem olim are physicians (31), educators (20), lawyers (18), businesspeople (13), and social workers (11). The Jerusalem Municipality reported that in 2022, approximately 3,322 new olim immigrated to the capital city, of which 2,072 are Russian-speaking olim, most of whom immigrated following the crisis. Another 22% of the olim are English-speakers, 8% French, and 6% Spanish.