Jewish Social Service Activities Increased in 1947, C.J.F.W.F. Report Reveals

Increased activity and expanded service were recorded in most areas of Jewish social service in 1947, it was revealed here today in a preliminary report by the Social Planning Department of the Council of Jewish Federations and Welfare Funds. The report is based on an analysis of I947 statistical figures from nearly two-thirds of all Jewish family agencies, child care agencies, homes for the aged and hospitals under Jewish auspices.

“Adjustment of Jewish health and welfare agencies to the profound changes that took place during the war years was by no means completed in 1947,” the report declared. While employment levels continued high, the cost of living soared, affecting both the agencies and those they served. Continued higher costs and scarcities of labor and material largely postponed to the future new construction and expansion of institutional and hospital plants which had been needed since the early war years. Meanwhile, the needs of Jews overseas were unprecedented and substantial numbers of Jewish immigrants entered the United States, many of them in need of assistance from existing Jewish agencies.”

Jewish family service agencies as a group reported an increase of over one-third in the total amount of assistance being given to clients. This reflected the increase in the cost of living as well as increased service to immigrants.Slight increases were recorded in child care statistics. The trend continued toward an increase in the proportion of children in foster homes and a decrease in the number being aided in institutions.

In the field of hospital service, a seven percent increase was registered in the total volume of service. About 15 percent of all patient days in general hospitals were free. In 1947, a fraction under 50 percent of all patients admitted to Jewish general hospitals were Jewish. Surveys of health and hospital needs and plans for improving organization of community health services continued as a major interest of the larger Jewish federations. Detroit, Minneapolis, Miami and Denver have raised funds to establish a Jewish hospital in these cities and New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Boston and others, are planning to raise funds for expansion, modernization and improved services and facilities.

While the report cited a very slight increase in the number of people receiving old age care in homes for the aged and in institutional facilities, it added that most Jewish homes for the aged continue to have long waiting lists.

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