Nefesh B’Nefesh, in cooperation with the Ministry of Aliyah and Integration, the Jewish Agency, KKL-JNF, and JNF-USA, welcomed 98 new olim to Israel on Tuesday. Five El Al flights carrying olim from Toronto, Miami, Los Angeles, JFK, and Newark airports arrived throughout the day at Ben Gurion Airport. The Newark group had 74 olim; the youngest is eight months old. Two charter and eight group aliyah flights are scheduled to arrive over an eight-week period.
“The next eight weeks are our busiest and most exciting time of year as we work round the clock helping nearly 2,000 olim realize their dream of aliyah,” said Rabbi Yehoshua Fass, Nefesh B’Nefesh’s co-founder and executive director. “We wish each and every one of today’s 100 olim, who are kickstarting our summer aliyah season, a smooth acclimation as they build their new lives in the Jewish homeland.”
“My husband and I have been desperate to make aliyah for the longest time,” Shira Lankin Sheps, who had lived in Fair Lawn until she and her family made aliyah this week, said. “Suddenly, the end of the preparations just crept up on us, and now we’re finally here. The reality of the situation keeps hitting me in the little moments. I can’t believe how lucky I am, and I’m so appreciative of the opportunity to be here and to Nefesh B’Nefesh for making it so easy.”
More than 50 percent of new olim move to Israel during the summer, which is a natural transition period for them. They have a chance to settle into their homes and prepare for the upcoming school year.