Today I attended a gathering at the Haifa City Hall (http://www.tour-haifa.co.il/eng/modules/article/view.article.php/c21/113) of new immigrants to Haifa over the last few years togther with those families that give assistance to these new immigrants in the form of providing advice, a shoulder to lean on, assisting in finding employment or introducing them to the social scene.
The purpose of this gathering was to raise a glass of wine to toast the imminent New Year (Rosh Hashonnah, http://roshhashanah.torah.org ) and to give the new immigrants the opportunity to relate their experiences starting a new life in Haifa.
A representative of the council informed the participants that the City council policy was to coordinate the activities of the immigration organisations and to provide as much practical assistance as possible. Although the number of immigrants reaching Haifa is small compared to other cities in Israel, the numbers are, nevertheless, increasing. With the growth in the economy showing a healthy increase over each of the last 5 years, the number of job opportunities in Haifa and its environs are increasing.
Immigrants from France, USA, UK, South America, South Africa were present giving a truly international flavour and the musical interlude was provided by a harpist, also an immigrant from the former Soviet Union