Lone soldiers given all-purpose ‘Errands Day’ with Nefesh B’Nefesh, FIDF

Lone soldiers are young Jewish people, often new immigrants, who come to Israel mostly from North America, Australia, South America and Europe to serve in the IDF.

Lone Soldiers at Yom Siddurim with Rabbi Fass and Tony Gelbart (photo credit: NEFESH B'NEFESH)
Lone Soldiers at Yom Siddurim with Rabbi Fass and Tony Gelbart
(photo credit: NEFESH B'NEFESH)
It’s tough being a soldier, but when you are a fresh oleh (new immigrant) it’s even harder. Getting your driver’s license, mending clothes, or choosing a phone provider can become harder if your Hebrew is shaky and you don’t have a car. Paying your bills, if you're on active duty in the West Bank, is impossible as you can't take a trip to the bank. 
This is why Nefesh B’Nefesh and Friends of the IDF (FIDF) arranged for a one-stop-serves-all event under the title of "Personal Errands Day" on Thursday in Tel Aviv's Beit HaChail (soldier's residence).
The IDF offers such a day to lone soldiers, who usually have to get from one point to the other and face bureaucracy, whereas this event hosts a selection of services under one roof and cuts the red tape by having official government agencies participate. 
Aliyah and Integration Minister Yoav Gallant said he was "moved to see this example of Zionism at its best" when he visited the event. He thanked Nefesh B'Nefesh and mentioned that his own ministry was among the agencies on hand to help these young men and women. 
Roughly 2,000 soldiers were able to get things done thanks to the event, including Texas-born Joe Brikman, who was able to get an Israeli driver’s license and pay his municipality taxes.They were also offered personal interviews to discuss their post-army lives in Israel.
The soldiers were also able to obtain Israeli ID cards and passports, learn about academic programs they can apply to, and meet firms eager to offer them jobs once they finish their service.
Sadly, while the IDF provides lone soldiers with funded flights to visit their families, Australian soldiers will have to wait due to the coronavirus epidemic raging in Asia. Flights to the fifth continent from Israel usually stop in other places along the way, such as China and Japan.