Letter to the editor May 12

Letter to the editor May 12

The success of aliyah

In an article chronicling three North Americans who moved back to the United States after becoming Israeli citizens, not mentioned were the estimated 350,000 Anglos who are currently thriving and leading meaningful lives in the Jewish state (“Olim who came back to U.S. describe challenges of aliyah,” May 5).

The individuals spotlighted all had legitimate reasons for their frustrations in Israel: employment struggles, acclimation, cultural differences and language barriers. The fact unfortunately remains that immigrating to another country can indeed be challenging.

However, in every circumstance noted in the article, Nefesh B’Nefesh can directly point to a vast amount of programs to make these adjustments easier. From our around-the-clock employment center focused entirely on assisting olim achieve their professional goals, to a social integration department to connect with other immigrants and Israelis alike, to free and subsidized Hebrew lessons, we invest heavily in our post-aliyah programming and the resources are always there to be capitalized on.

The transition to becoming an Israeli citizen can sometimes be difficult, as adjusting to a new culture and work environment is never simple. However, Nefesh B’Nefesh together with the Israeli government and numerous aliyah assistance organizations are exhausting all efforts to ease the aliyah process. To date, Nefesh B’Nefesh has assisted more than 50,000 olim from North America and the United Kingdom in making Israel their home. Though we have seen various olim return to their countries of origin for various reasons, 90 percent are enjoying quality lives in Israel.

After having just celebrated 69 years of independence, the Jewish homeland is thriving and has never been more welcoming to new olim. New employment opportunities are constantly becoming available and olim are becoming a part of communities across the country.

Zev Gershinsky

Executive Vice President

Nefesh B’Nefesh