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  • Ekatarina and her son Miron in kibbutz Kaled | Photo: JAFI
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News From the Fields – FH Update July 2022

Valeria Zakharova - 27 July 2022

Eighteen new kibbutzim have joined the Program and about one hundred new families will be accommodated there by the end of the year. It is hard to imagine how, but in this difficult situation with all the worldwide problems in 2022 we have welcomed not only new Jewish immigrants (olim) but also our dear friends from Christians for Israel International. Recently we had a very pleasant visit from Marie-Louise from Austria, Anemone from Germany, and Alina from Ukraine. Welcoming the olim and our recent guests encouraged us greatly to carry on with our mission.

 

Anemone, Marie-Louise and Alina in kibbutz Beeri | Photo: JAFI

“Many people from different countries of the former Soviet Union are literally trying to “take the last train””

Despite our praying for peace, the conflict in Ukraine doesn’t stop. Many people from different countries of the former Soviet Union are literally trying to “take the last train” to go to Israel and leave behind everything that was part of their past life. Some of them contact us during a trip to Israel, sitting on a bus, train or plane, crossing the border, et cetera. Others call us from Israel in the nick of time, we receive these calls daily.

This is an unusual practice for us, because we are used to keeping an eye on a family from the moment of making their decision about aliyah until the moment of their arrival in the kibbutz. In April, we thought we could managed this challenge but the huge wave of olim is continuing to come. While families who joined “First Home in the Homeland” in early March are preparing for their final Hebrew exam, dozens of families are waiting for their first meeting with the kibbutz in July and August.

In the mean time, we have already accepted about one hundred families into our program. They will join us in six different regions from July until November 2022, namely: Ramat HaNegev, Eshkol and Shaar HaNegev in the South, Jezreel Valley, Jordan Valley and Shomron in the North. Among them, we are expecting many families with three or four children, while usually we welcome families with one or two children. It is worth mentioning that one new kibbutz, Or HaNer, has recently joined the FH-Program. Everything the newcomers need is present in this kibbutz: light apartments, good infrastructure with a swimming pool, a canteen, a policlinic, sports and playgrounds, kindergartens and a Hebrew class (Ulpan) nearby. We plan to accommodate eight families there in October.

Kibbutz Or Haner | Photo: JAFI

“We help them with Hebrew and we stay next to them in every difficult situation they encounter”

Whatever the difficulties, we try to make the life of our participants as comfortable as possible. We celebrate all national holidays, the traditional holidays and all birthdays together, we take them to important historical places, museums to show them the real Israel from the inside and facilitate their integration into Israeli society, we help them with Hebrew and we stay next to them in every difficult situation they encounter.

 

Kibbutz Yehiam | Photo: JAFI

As a result, many of them ask us if they can stay in the kibbutz after the program is completed. For example, the families from the cities of Shostka, Kharkov, Kyiv, Odessa, Lvov and Kharkov, amongst others.

Kibbutz Yotvata | Photo: JAFI

However, many families are already committed to starting their life outside the kibbutz – like Olga from Dneprodzerzhinsk and Nelly from Krivoi Rog.

With your assistance, we have done more than usual – we have welcomed more families than usual, we have opened new places for our olim – eighteen new kibbutzim have joined the FH-Program, we have found the strength to help everyone who lodged an appeal to us. Thank you for everything, we believe that better times will come soon!

Please support the “First Home in the Homeland” Project. Any amount is welcome! Assisting a family in the “First Home” program costs € 230 euro / US $ 250 a month.

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