Most of the work of the organisations affiliated to the Council is conducted through about 18,000 volunteers, most of whom are veteran immigrants, spread over184 service bureaus around the country who are assisted by an experienced, mission-inspired team of some 40 professional coordinators.
The immigrant associations are, for new immigrants, a form of first aid station in which they are offered a sympathetic ear to their problems and where they can receive advice in their own language, direction and support in their first steps in Israel.
The widespread activities of immigrant associations have been recognised and are supported by the Ministry of Absorption and the Jewish Agency as a sign of appreciation for their unique and important contribution to the promotion of immigrant absorption.
Below is a list of some of the activities and services that are provided by immigrant associations:
· Receiving immigrants at Ben Gurion Airport.
· Familiarisation trips around Israel and lectures on a wide range of topics.
· Support for immigrant parents and students in the education system.
· Special activities for the festivals.
· Operating clubs for youth and adults.
· Setting up and operating libraries in various languages.
· Organising seminars for reinforcing Jewish identification.
· Free legal advice.
· Manning emergency hotlines during times of war and emotional stress.
· Administering a fund for mortgages and loans to immigrants.
· Organising Hebrew language study classes during afternoon hours.
· Financial assistance to those in need through contacts with the various welfare authorities around the country.
· Referrals to potential employers and professional training.
· Assistance in finding employment and in writing curriculum vitae.
· Personal accompaniment and assistance in contending with bureaucratic difficulties.
· Contact with the community and candidates for immigration in their country of origin.
· Distributing information and explanatory material in various mother tongues.
· Providing scholarships to students and soldiers.
· Adopting and/or keeping contact with soldiers without families in Israel.
· Organising social activities for familiarisation with Israeli society.
· Study days about immigrants’ rights, absorption and employment.
· Representing immigrants at government offices.
· Protecting the rights of immigrants at the Knesset’s Immigration and Absorption Committee within the scope of the Immigrants Organisations Council.