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Backer Honored on Eve of Departure for Europe on Ort Mission; Laguardia Hails Ort Work

A farewell dinner for George Backer, president of the American ORT Federation and the World ORT Union, was given here last night on the eve of his departure for Europe where he will direct the expansion of ORT’s network of schools, workshops and training farms.

In a message sent to the dinner, Fiorello LaGuardia, retiring Director-General of UNRRA, praised the achievements of ORT, stating that: “The UNRRA has at all times welcomed the efforts of the voluntary agencies working for the improvement of the unhappy situation of the displaced persons in the administration’s care. Among such programs, that developed by ORT stands high as a practical and comprehensive effort to rehabilitate persons who through no fault of their own have lost their ability to maintain themselves in their former homes and occupations.”

Mr. Backer said ORT’s major task today is to increase its activities in the displaced persons camps in Germany where some 3,500 are now being trained in a variety of skills in 24 camps under UNRRA authorization. “The value of ORT work for the despairing displaced persons,” Mr. Backer said “is that it prepares them for a productive life of self-support wherever they land eventually.”