On Monday, 233 olim from 19 US states and one Canadian province gathered at JFK Airport to take a flight to the Promised Land.
The El Al Boeing 777 will be chartered by Nefesh B’Nefesh, in cooperation with the Ministry of Aliyah and Integration, the Jewish Agency for Israel, Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael-Jewish National Fund and JNF-USA.The passengers include 21 families, 75 children, six sets of twins, and people working in a range of professions, including 26 medical professionals. The oldest is 79 years old, and the youngest is eight and a half months old. Thirty-two of the immigrants are moving to the periphery, as part of Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael-Jewish National Fund’s Go South and Go North programs.More than a quarter of the olim (68 people) plan to join the IDF over the coming months as lone soldiers, in the country without close family to help them. An additional four women are set to join the national service as volunteers.
Immigrants celebrate arrival to Israel (credit: nefesh b"nefesh)
The flight will be landing in Ben Gurion airport on Tuesday morning local time and the new citizens will be met by a slew of VIPs including Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat, Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid, Jewish Agency head Natan Sharansky and Chief Rabbi David Lau.Nefesh B’Nefesh co-founders Rabbi Yehoshua Fass and Tony Gelbart will also be on hand to welcome the newcomers.Jpost will be airing a live broadcast of the flights arrival, the official greetings and the first reactions of the olim on Tuesday morning.Tuesday’s planeload is the second of two Nefesh B’Nefesh charter flights this summer, which, along with 11 group aliya flights, and olim arriving independently, will bring more than 2,000 olim making aliya through Nefesh B’Nefesh this summer from North America.