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Exodus from Ukraine – End of year hustle and bustle

editor - 19 January 2018

By Koen Carlier.. Ukrainian drivers busy under wintery conditions. We can look back with gratitude for the many thousands of olim who came home for good from Ukraine and other former Soviet Republics since the beginning of this year (2017). Every month more than 2,000 Jewish men and women make aliyah world wide and more than 25 percent of them come from Ukraine. In November alone from Ukraine 728 olim and in the month of December more than 1,000 Jewish men and women will have made this journey or plan to do so. From December 24 onwards through December 28 our last trips with 159 olim to different airports are planned. This year (2017) from January 1st till the end of November 6,200 olim made aliyah from Ukraine.

Finally at Lvov airport

Since Monday December 18 it started snowing in abundance causing a lot problems on the roads! Because of the heavy snowfall many villages and towns are cut off from the outside world and even the busy highway from Odessa to Kiev – almost 500 kilometres – was hardly passable and more than 800 lorries were stuck on the slow lane. Here and there a little tent was put up to provide stranded drivers with hot drinks and soup. We too have to deal with bad luck during or after a trip, but that has become a part of life for us.

In the past days we had some trips with olim from different places. From Chernovsty (close to the Romanianborder) and Ivano Frankovsk taking olim to the airport of Lvov in Western Ukraine. And also collecting olimfrom all sorts of other hamlets to take them to the airport in Kiev. We drove for two days at a stretch but everything went all right and eleven olim left with a one way flight from Lvov airport for good.
We are not there yet and until the end of this year another 159 olim will make this one way journey!

Our drivers will be very busy almost till the end of the year to help everyone in a practical way! For the Jewishmen and women who will leave Ukraine for good the last trip to the airport is an emotional moment. All of a sudden they realise that they are leaving everything behind and off into the unknown future. But thanks to all kinds of programs, e.g. “First Home in the Homeland” the new immigrants are taken care of and looked after very well so that they are well integrated into Israeli society in six to twelve months.

Also part of our work, of our eight buses we operate in Ukraine every week one or two are in the garage
for repairs

Every time when we take olim to the airports we remember these special verses from the book of Jeremiah 31:8-9, where it says: “See, I will bring them from the land of the north and gather them from the ends of the earth. Among them will be the blind and the lame, expectant mothers and women in labor; a great throng will return. They will come with weeping; they will pray as I bring them back. I will lead them beside streams of water on a level path where they will not stumble, because I am Israel’s father, and Ephraim is my firstborn son.”

Will you help them to come home in Israel for good too?  

Help the Jews come home!
Please support our action ‘Bring the Jews Home’.
It costs 135 Euro’s or 160 US $ to assist one Ukrainian Jewish man or woman in making aliyah.

Any amount is welcome! 

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