Lone Immigrant Soldiers

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Lone Immigrant Soldiers

  1. 1. “I came to Israel and served Each year approximately 700 lone in the army for three years. immigrant soldiers serve in the Israel Like other lone immigrant Defense Forces. soldiers, none of us knew Among discharged lone soldiers: 83% said what to expect after our they were more prepared for civilian life discharge. The Wings after the Wings program. Program prepared me to take 4,500 immigrant soldiers will participate this my first steps as an adult in Israeli society.” -- Ari Blatt, discharged combat year in approximately 20 Nativ courses to strengthen their connection to Judaism and to Israel. Supporting soldier from Florida 67% of Nativ participants said that the program made them a better soldier and a better citizen. Lone 150 parents were reunited with their children who made aliyah and are now serving in the Israeli army through the Immigrant Keshet program. Soldiers Vladimir, a bomb detonator Find out how you can make an impact: Tel: +972.2.620.2633 v 212.339.6048 in an elite combat unit in the E-mail: ask@jafi.org e ask@jewishagency.org www.jewishagency.org Israeli army, had not seen his mother in over a year. Thanks to the Jewish Agency’s Keshet The Jewish Agency is funded by The Jewish Federations of North America, Keren program they were reunited Hayesod, major Jewish communities and federations, the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, foundations and donors from Israel and around the world. for a week in Israel.
  2. 2. Brave, motivated young adults from around Wings: Preparation for Civilian Life Keshet the world choose to leave their families With parents living thousands of miles away and Each year some 700 lone immigrant soldiers to start a new life in Israel and serve in their children serving in the Israeli army, the Jewish transition from the army to civilian life. While the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). The Jewish this is difficult for any soldier, for lone soldiers Agency sponsors a trip for parents to visit their Agency supports these brave young men it presents even greater challenges. The Jewish children in Israel. For some, it is their first trip to the and women through programs which Agency’s Wings Program paves the way for newly country. For all, it is a chance to share their child’s prepare them for life after the army, bring discharged lone soldiers to find a place to live, new life, even for a short time. their parents to visit and connect them with get a job and choose their career path. Parents spend ten days traveling around Israel their Jewish heritage. with their children, who get special leave from Pre-Discharge Seminars – a weeklong course their service. In many instances, especially among Nativ: Strengthening Jewish and that teaches lone soldiers about their civilian soldiers from the former Soviet Union (FSU), the Zionist Identity for Immigrant Soldiers lone soldiers may not have seen their parents for entitlements such as medical insurance, a number of years due to the prohibitive cost of a Nativ is an educational program that reinforces a new college scholarships and work benefits. trip to Israel. This emotional visit often serves as a immigrant soldier’s sense of connection to Israel and Soldiers receive job counseling and financial catalyst for family members remaining overseas to his or her Jewish heritage. This intensive, seven-week advice as well as support from local business decide about their own aliyah. program is offered to soldiers who want to learn leaders. Cost per parent on the Keshet program: $1,700 more about Judaism, Zionism, Israeli tradition and history. For those soldiers who are not recognized “Landing on their Feet” Grant – an as Jewish by the Israeli Government, Nativ offers immediate grant of $500 for discharged professional guidance and support through the lone soldiers to assist them with initial living conversion process. expenses and their first month’s rent. Over 8,000 soldiers have participated in Nativ since it was launched in 2001 together with the Ministry Cost per soldier for the Wings Program: $1,540 of Immigrant Absorption, and the IDF. To date, more Cost for grant: $500 than 3,200 graduates have continued their studies and completed the conversion process. Cost per soldier in the Nativ program: $1,100

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