Finding love in Israel
Photo: Reuters

Flight of the Singles

Last year's Flight of the Singles produced one marriage and two engaged couples

Israeli singles – get ready. 60 single Jewish American men and women are landing in Israel this week, who are dreaming “not only” about making aliyah and becoming new Israelis, but also of finding love here.


This is the third year that Yediot Ahronot is allowing you to be the first to get to know some of those who have come here seeking partners. It is a true mitzvah, since – as a result of these articles - a large number of the singles featured in earlier articles have already gotten married or at least gotten engaged to Israelis.


One of them is Serena Golden, 34, from New York, who got married last March to Assaf Shimoni, 38, from Israel.


Serena was part of the ‘Singles Project’ last year, run jointly by Nefesh B’Nefesh, which brings the singles to Israel, and “Yediot Ahronot”. At that time she related in an article that “I am looking for a man with a sense of humor, warm and loving, open and pleasant. He should be a family man who knows how to have fun, and also observes tradition.”


Serena noted that “Israeli men are more direct and honest than American men. You always know if they like you – and also the opposite. I will never need to wonder too much to know if an Israeli man likes me.”


After its publication – Serena relates – she received hundreds of inquiries from Israelis. She decided to leave it to fate. Out of all the inquiries, the only one she pursued was one from Assaf, with whom she went out on a date two weeks after making Aliyah.


They sat and talked for eight hours straight and fell in love. After four months they got married.


Serena works as a manager in a relocation company – Assaf was formerly a professional surfer, and today works as a lifeguard at the beach, a manager of a swimming pool and a children’s surfing coach. They live in Ashkelon.


Jamie McIntyre, 26, from Las Vegas, who immigrated on the singles flight last year, is also a success story.


'It isn’t easy to be a new immigrant in Israel'

Jamie met Yishai Vaknin, 23, and the two fell in love and now live in Kfar Yonah. They will fly to Las Vegas in the fall to get married.


Shoshana Waldstein,19, made aliyah to Eilat, last July, from Denver, Colorado. While working in a hotel there, she met Yisrael, 27, a fitness trainer and masseuse from Ofakim. The two got engaged and plan to get married in two years after Shoshana completes her IDF service.


Thousands of single men and women from have immigrated from North America (to Israel) with Nefesh B’Nefesh since the organization was established in 2002. Six hundred and forty of them have married in Israel, the lion’s share with native Israelis.


The organization notes that eight couples have married and are living in Israel after actually having met their spouses on some of the organization’s Aliyah flights.


On these flights, the singles are seated intentionally next to each other, in order to enable mingling during the 12 hour flight.


More than 1,700 single Jewish men and women are expected to make Aliyah from North America with Nefesh B’Nefesh in 2012. Approximately 450 of them will be arriving this summer.


The first singles flight will land in Israel on Thursday, as part of the joint cooperation between Nefesh B’Nefesh, the Ministry of Immigrant Absorption and the Jewish Agency.


Insofar as in previous years the singles flight flooded the organization’s switchboard with thousands of emotional inquiries, Nefesh B’Nefesh created a singles department, aimed at giving personal guidance to young professionals and singles who make Aliyah without family and is geared to their specific needs.


“It isn’t easy to be a new immigrant in Israel but there is no question that the absorption process becomes easier, happier and more successful when one experiences it together with an Israeli mate,” says Erez Halfon, Vice Chairman of Nefesh B’Nefesh.


“It isn’t easy to be a new immigrant in Israel but there is no question but that the absorption process becomes easier, happier and more successful when one experiences it together with an Israeli mate, says Erez Halfon, deputy chairman of Nefesh B’Nefesh.


Anyone interested in meeting single new immigrants, including those mentioned in this article can go to Facebook here and join the group.



פרסום ראשון: 07.12.12, 14:25
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