(Courtesy of Nefesh B’Nefesh) Over the past few months, Nefesh B’Nefesh, in cooperation with Israel’s Ministry of Aliyah and Integration, The Jewish Agency for Israel, Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael (KKL) and the Jewish National Fund-USA, has been working tirelessly to produce its annual Mega Aliyah Event, which provides potential olim with an all-encompassing slate of resources for retirees, young professionals, medical professionals, families and singles. The event was set to take place on March 15 in New Jersey with 1,500 individuals in attendance from 15 states across North America. Due to the recent COVID-19 outbreak, the in-person event could no longer take place, but was replaced with a large-scale “virtual” mega aliyah event, which took place Sunday, March 15, for a record 2,500 participants.
Nefesh B’Nefesh took full advantage of the online technological resources available in order to present an all-encompassing alternative to an in-person expo through a virtual mega event, which was held in real time.
The virtual fair included multiple online lectures on a wide range of aliyah topics, in order to provide potential olim with accurate, reliable and relevant information to help ease their aliyah process. The webinars were broadcast live, via Zoom, and delivered by Nefesh B’Nefesh experts as well as Israeli professionals in the medical, legal and financial fields.
“During this challenging time, we are directing our hearts and prayers to those affected by the coronavirus pandemic,” said Rabbi Yehoshua Fass, co-founder and executive director of Nefesh B’Nefesh. “In light of this complex situation, and the cancellation of our annual mega aliyah event, we refocused our approach and decided to use the best technological and digital tools available in order to provide potential olim with all of the same necessary information in real time, continuing our support for olim in every situation, on their way to fulfilling their Zionist dream of living in Israel.”
The online seminars included rights and benefits for olim, converting a U.S. medical license to an Israeli license, Israeli tax payments for retirees and the general public, employment options in Israel, buying and renting apartments, the Israeli education system, the Israeli health system and more.
During the fair, potential olim were able to ask questions via a chat function or call into the Nefesh B’Nefesh call center (1-866-4-ALIYAH), which was staffed by the organization’s aliyah and employment departments, to answer any inquiries and questions from participants.
Following the virtual fair, all lectures were saved on the Nefesh B’Nefesh YouTube page, and are available to watch at any time.