Basle (Sep. 7)
(Jewish Telegraphic Agency)
Next to the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, the Keren Hayesod (Palestine Foundation Fund) is the largest Jewish fund raising agency in the world, with 10 percent of the Jewish population, excluding the Jewish community in Russia, subscribing to it, according to a report submitted to the Fifteenth Zionist Congress by Dr. Arthur Hantke, one of the directors of the Keren Hayesod.
According to Dr. Hantke’s figures, the Keren Hayesod had a gross income during the past two years of Â£800,000. This represents two-thirds of the public contributions made for the upbuilding of Palestine. A quarter of a million persons, half of whom are non-Zionists, contributed toward the fund. The subscription per family amounted to half a pound annually, with 10 percent of the Jewish population, exclusive of Russia, participating. Keren Hayesod collections are prohibited in Russia by the Soviet government.
The expenditures of the Fund grew as the collection and the activities of the fund were extended, he stated. Dr. Hantke said that the Keren Hayesod has succeeded in enlisting the financial support of non-Zionists for the upbuilding of Palestine. He urged, therefore, that the Fund be kept out of party fights.
Formulating the program of the Keren Hayesod for the future, Dr. Hantke recommended that the fund create an industrial credit institution, intensify its mortgage business and open agricultural credit on the basis of individual contracts with the settlers. He also urged greater stringency in the financial policy of the fund, the Keren Hayesod having advanced moneys to the Zionist Organization.
At Tuesday night’s session, which lasted only one hour, a discussion developed on the activities of the Keren Hayesod and the Jewish National Fund, the spokesmen for the Mizrachi urging that greater emphasis be laid in the Palstine institutions on the observance of Jewish tradition.