Even though he’s now 69, Dagef clearly remembers his childhood in Ethiopia, listening to stories of the Jewish people and Jerusalem. Dagef’s most vivid memory is of his grandfather on Passover telling of the miraculous exodus from Egypt, explaining all ten plagues and the splitting of the Red Sea with detail and enthusiasm. His grandfather ended the story with his finger pointed towards Israel. “My grandpa assured us that God would redeem us from our exile as He had redeemed our ancestors from Egypt,” Dagef recalls.
Dagef and his wife, Yeshorek, waited for close to 17 years to migrate to Israel. “At a certain point, I began to educate my children to go to Israel without me in case I was too old to travel when our chance came.” This past September, they fulfilled their dream and made aliyah. Since moving to Israel, they have been living in the Mevasseret Zion Ethiopian absorption center. The view from their apartment overlooks the beautiful mountains of Zion, and Dagef feels like he is living a dream.
Dagef says he is “filled with tremendous gratitude for The Fellowship. They were God’s messengers who brought us out of Ethiopia, and their love and assistance continue to guide us here in Israel. Without The Fellowship standing behind us, we simply could not make a life for ourselves and our family here in Israel.”