Project Spotlight: Fellowship Klitah Projects | IFCJ
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Project Spotlight: Fellowship Klitah Projects

klitah story (Photo: Nir Kafri)

Although The Fellowship is well-known for bringing thousands of needy Jewish families to Israel on aliyah, lesser known but as important are The Fellowship’s klitah (resettlement) projects that help new immigrants make the major transition to a new country, a new language, and a new culture. The Fellowship supports more than 31 klitah projects, many designed for younger immigrants who will become Israel’s future.

We help people like Svitlana:

Svitlana made aliyah (immigrated to Israel) last August with her husband and son from Belarus. Svitlana was a general physician in Belarus. Here in Israel she is studying Hebrew, and she intends to take the exam she needs to qualify to work as a physician in Israel.

Svitlana explains that her 8-year-old son has been having a very hard time with the transition. “Iliya is an intelligent and happy boy who loves to chat and play with friends,” she says. “But since we came to Israel, he just stopped talking all together. He became very closed and reclusive, and worst of all, he lost the joyful smile and sparkle he once had in his eyes.”

Iliya’s case is not isolated. Countless children whose families made aliyah from the FSU are going through the same painful hardships, and our Fellowship field representatives have heard similar stories from many immigrant mothers and fathers.

This is why The Fellowship started a program offering help to children whose families just made aliyah on Fellowship Freedom Fights from the FSU. The program includes a weekly workshop for the kids. There they get to meet and socialize with other children whose families also recently made aliyah and are experiencing similar difficulties.

During the workshop, the children receive help with homework, and they also work on Hebrew reading and writing skills, as well as conversational Hebrew through group games. And most importantly, the workshop instills in them a feeling of belonging in Israel.

Iliya’s mother feels so blessed by this Fellowship program that has helped her son. She says Iliya has gone through a complete transformation since he joined the workshop. “Iliya began to speak again, he is learning Hebrew, he made friends, and for the first time since we made aliyah, I see a smile on his face,” Svitlana says, a joyful tear rolling down her cheek. “I can’t thank you enough. God bless you and keep doing the holy work you are doing – Israel needs The Fellowship.”

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