TEL AVIV, The first French Jews to move to Israel since Friday’s ISIS terrorist attacks arrived today with the help of the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, part of the organization’s drive to help more Jews from France make aliyah (immigrate to Israel).
Two families landed at Tel Aviv’s Ben-Gurion Airport today, met by IFCJ representatives (see attached photos). “After the attacks, people tried not to leave their homes – it was scary,” said Daniel Ventura, who immigrated to Israel with his wife and two young girls. “For two years we’ve lived with insecurity and wanted to make aliyah. I would not want my children to live, learn and get married in France.”
Over the weekend, The Fellowship’s Founder and President Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein said the organization would help any French Jew who wants to make aliyah. At the same time, The Fellowship announced it was expanding emergency security aid to French-Jewish communal institutions.
“Alongside millions of Christian supporters of Israel, we stand with the beleaguered Jews of France, whether by helping bring those who want to start new lives in Israel, or better protecting the French-Jewish community and its institutions,” said Eckstein. “The Fellowship is committed to protecting Jewish communities in need around the world and to helping those seeking to immigrate.”
The Fellowship this weekend provided emergency aid of more than $86,000 to 25 synagogues and schools run by the Chabad Lubavitch movement across France, including in Paris and Toulouse, to beef up security by adding security guards and more sophisticated security systems. The aid is part of more than $2 million The Fellowship is sending to Chabad and other Jewish communal groups in dozens of countries to beef up security in the wake of the Mumbai terror attacks and other threats.
Since the Ukraine civil war, The Fellowship has brought more than 1,600 Jews from that country to Israel as well, with plans to bring 400 more by year’s end.
In addition to the families who arrived in Israel today, The Fellowship will also be bringing a special flight of French Jews to Israel at the end of November. For those French Jews who wish to move to Israel, The Fellowship provides information fairs and preparatory seminars in France, guidance for six months once the immigrants arrive in Israel, employment counseling, one-time financial aid or six months of rental support, tuition assistance for job training, financial support to help immigrants learn Hebrew, material aid such as furniture, appliances and medical treatment, and private tutors and informal education for children.