ICEJ AID to Israel - absorption aid

ICEJ Brings Aid to Israel – Helps Absorption Center


ICEJ is brining aid to Israel by assisting with the Aliyah and absorption needs of the steady stream of Jews from around the world who continue to immigrate to their biblical homeland, despite the current war. The ICEJ is part of this remarkable influx of Jews making Aliyah—we have sponsored flights for more than 80 Jews coming home from Ethiopia, France, and South Africa in early April alone.

The process of resettling in Israel is full of challenges in normal times but even more so in a time of war. Thus, the role of absorption centers for new immigrants run by The Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI) is even more crucial than usual.

Yeelim Absorption Center

Recently, an ICEJ delegation visited new immigrants we are helping to sponsor at the Yeelim Absorption Center in Beer Sheva, which can house up to 500 Olim (“newcomers”) at a time. Yeelim offers more than a place to stay; it provides a sanctuary from the storm raging not far away in Gaza. Here, the staff is committed to helping newly arrived Jewish families make a seamless transition into Israeli life. Through a comprehensive, one-year program, these immigrants are equipped with the tools necessary for success, like job placement assistance, recertification opportunities, and Hebrew language instruction. For many immigrants, including a significant number of skilled doctors, these initiatives are lifelines, smoothing their path into the fabric of Israeli society.

Amid the current conflict, with many IDF reservists called up to active duty, Israel is grappling with a scarcity of skilled labor, particularly in the spheres of medicine and high-tech. Recognizing this urgent need, the ICEJ stepped in to sponsor specialized programs for new immigrants tailored to address the critical manpower shortages in these fields.

Striving for a Better Future

Dmitri Rubanov’s journey epitomizes this convergence of skill and opportunity. Dmitri—a doctor who immigrated from Belarus with his family two years ago—seized the chance to pivot into the realm of high-tech. His decision to remain in Israel amid upheaval underscores not only his resilience but also the profound solidarity and unity that define Israeli society.

“People here stand together. They help each other. It’s a unity I have never seen or experienced before,” Dmitri said.

Alin Abouharon, director of the Yeelim Absorption Center, explained: “When new immigrants are questioned about their motivations for making Aliyah, the predominant response is, ‘We want a better future for our children.’”


Programs like this hold significance not only for individuals but also for the nation as a whole. They play a crucial role in fortifying the foundational pillars of this country for the benefit of future generations.

Our visit culminated in the distribution of special “Welcome Home” gift boxes to the newcomers. These thoughtful packages contained an array of sweet delicacies, from jam and date honey to wine and olive oil. Notably, these gift boxes were part of a generous donation of 120 packages from a Christian businessman from Singapore.

“We want to thank you for your support that will help us with our integration here in Israel,” responded Andrei Ulitin, a recent immigrant from Russia. Andrei’s heartfelt gratitude echoed the sentiments of countless other immigrants, acknowledging the indispensable role of Christian support in facilitating their integration into the promised land.

Indeed, the act of Aliyah is not just about a plane ride or a geographical relocation. It involves something much deeper: Jewish families being firmly planted back in their ancestral homeland, just as the Lord promised: “I will rejoice in doing them good and will assuredly plant them in this land with all my heart and soul” (Jeremiah 32:41 NIV).

—By: Marelinke Van Der Riet, ICEJ Operations Executive Assistant

Assist the Jewish people as they settle in the “Promised Land.”