LONG BEACH, Calif (Jan. 23)
Quick action by the National Community Relations Advisory Council in implementing a set of principles adopted last November to improve the programs, planning and financing of Jewish community relations agencies was called for by the Western States Region of the Council of Jewish Federations and Welfare Funds at its two-day annual Assembly held here. More than 200 representatives from 18 Jewish communities in the area attended the parley which concluded Sunday evening. The delegates discussed and took action an major local, national and overseas problems facing American Jewry in 1952.
In another major resolution, the delegates urged upon every community the “earliest development of coordinated procedures” in 1952 to assure maximum aid to Israel through the Four Point Program. Considering the field of Jewish community relations, the community representatives declared that action should be taken “at the earliest possible moment, and not later than June 1952,” the date agreed upon for adoption of a final decision by agencies affiliated with the NCRAC.
The set of principles adopted by the plenary session of the NCRAC at Atlantic City in November, grew out of the report by Professor Robert M. MacIver. The CJFWF General Assembly in Chicago last December urged speedy implementation of measures to improve planning and programming in the field of Jewish community relations. These principles included a division of functions to avoid duplication, development of long range planning, strengthening of the NCRAC, further development of local community relations councils, and exploration of methods to improve the system of financing operations.
Sidney Hollander, a member of the CJFWF executive committee, the Council’s second president from 1939-46, traced the long history of efforts to achieve better coordination among the Jewish defense agencies, and the recurring demands by local communities for the elimination of wasteful duplication and competition among national organizations. “Professor MacIver’s masterful study, ” he stated, “made it abundantly clear that there is urgent need for substantial changes in our current programs and organization.”
The total range of Jewish responsibilities in Israel, overseas, nationally and at home were reviewed by Philip Bernstein, CJFWF associate director, in his address “Mobilizing To Meet Major Needs in 1952.” “To a large degree, American Jewish philanthropic support this year will be devoted to meeting Israel’s needs, ” he pointed out. “In addition, communities will be required to adjust their local programs and planning to provide expanded services in the fields of child care, aged, aid to refugees, family service, recreation and Jewish education.”
The delegates also approved the following resolutions: 1. Requested the Council of Jewish Federations and Welfare Funds to provide fuller budgeting information on beneficiary agencies of local welfare fund campaigns; 2. Recommended that communities develop programs to recruit and train increasing numbers of leaders for total community services. Eli H. Levenson, of San Diego, was elected president of the Western States Region, succeeding Raphael Brandes, Tucson.