Monday, May 25, 2009

New Immigrants to Gush Etzion Receive Extra Help

by Malkah Fleisher

( New immigrants to communities in the Gush Etzion area of the Judean region will now be able to receive additional benefits and support as part of the Ministry of Absorption's Aliyah Kehilati "Community Aliyah" program.

Aliyah Kehilati offers substantial financial and social assistance to immigrants who make aliyah to one of a select group of communities. While olim (new immigrants) to Efrat are not eligible, those who move to other Gush Etzion communities are entitled to enhanced Hebrew language ulpan courses and extra rent subsidies, entrepreneurship stipends, academic assistance for school-age children, cultural and special activities, and aliyah-related counseling.

These benefits, which are additional to those in the regular "absorption basket," are already extended to North Americans who move to Ariel, Jerusalem, Ma'aleh Adumim, and Modi'in, to Britons moving to Modi'in or Haifa, and South Africans and Australians moving to Modi'in.

Nefesh B'Nefesh (NBN), the organization facilitating North American and British aliyah, will assist immigrants in accessing these services and allowances. "We look forward to working together with the Jewish Agency on this project and ensuring a smooth and successful absorption for many more olim," said Tzvi Richter, NBN's director of the Guidance and Community Resources department.

The Aliyah Kehilati project in Gush Etzion will be headed by Benjie Aziz. Interested immigration applicants are encouraged to contact him at, and to inquire about opportunities through Nefesh B'Nefesh at

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