JERUSALEM (Mar. 20)
Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt started a whirlwind tour of Israel this week-end, sandwiching in meetings with leaders of Israel’s Government, institutions and religious life between trips to villages, schools and centers for Israel inhabitants of all ages and all walks of life. In part, her trip is a revisit of settlements, towns and institutions she saw three years ago when she was last in Israel.
Mrs. Roosevelt was a luncheon guest of President Itzhak Ben Zvi yesterday, a Sabbath eve guest of Chief Rabbi Isaac Halevi Herzog and also dined with members of the executives of the Jewish Agency and of the Israel Foundation Fund. At the dinner last night, the Agency officials outlined the needs of beneficiary organizations in Israel of the United Jewish Appeal. Upon her return to the United States, Mrs. Roosevelt will undertake a speaking tour in behalf of the UJA.
During her visits, she spent considerable time at an old age home near Nathanya maintained by Malben, the welfare program in Israel of the Joint Distribution Committee. Here she was welcomed by some 100 old people who presented her with home grown flowers and then showed her the products of their part-time activities. Later, she visited an ORT school in Nathanya where she saw some 300 students at work in carpentry, electronic and mechanical workshops.
At Kfar Vitkin she visited a rural vocational training center maintained by the Youth Aliyah and Hadassah, the women’s Zionist organizations of America, and which had been named for her during her last visit to the Jewish State. She then proceeded to Jerusalem where she visited a reception center and hostel maintained for girls by the Women’s League for Israel. Here the girls presented her with a shawl which had been embroidered for her by a group of blind girls.
On her itinerary for later this week are visits to more Malben institutions and participation in several symposiums, one of which will be on the problems of youth in agricultural settlements and will be held at Ohalo, on the shores of Lake Kinnereth. In a comment during one of her visits, Mrs. Roosevelt exclaimed that Israel was a “unique laboratory” in which had occurred in a short interval the integration of many groups coming from various economic and social levels.