Hundreds of new immigrants made Aliyah to Israel at the end of the summer in time to experience the High Holidays in Israel. For these olim starting their brand-new lives, the New Year took on a special meaning.
Holidays are different in Israel than anywhere else in the world. Where else can one hear the sound of the shofar in the streets? The holiday-themed advertising and plethora of synagogues are exciting for new citizens.
One hundred young new immigrants from 45 different countries got a special holiday treat. Isaac Herzog, Jewish Agency chair, led pre-Yom Kippur prayer service at the Western Wall. Herzog, the grandson of Israel's first chief rabbi, had many stories for the group as he led them on a tour of the Western Wall tunnels.
Another group of immigrants has a good reason to celebrate. Sixty doctors from all over the world completed a year-long to convert their licenses. The doctors, who arrived via the Jewish Agency's Israel Experience Program, are part of an initiative to solve the doctor shortage. Upon completing the course, the physicians can make Aliya. They now join the ranks of 600 international doctors who immigrated with the program