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Jewish Youth Center Opens in Brussels with J. D. C. Aid; 40th in Europe

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A new youth center for the Jewish Community of Brussels–the fortieth institution of the kind opened in Europe in the last five years–was dedicated here last night. The center is in a building remodeled and equipped with monies supplied by the Joint Distribution Committee and the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, with the JDC additionally furnishing technical assistance. Responsibility for maintenance and operations of the Center now rests with the local Jewish community.

Charles H. Jordan, JDC director-general for overseas operations, attended the inaugural ceremonies. He pointed out that the Youth Center movement has added vital impetus toward revival of Jewish life throughout Europe. Prior to 1954, there was not single center for Jewish youth in Europe, Mr. Jordan said, despite the fact that such centers are taken for granted in America as part of Jewish community life.

“Wherever these centers have been built,” the JDC representative declared, “in Germany, France, Italy, Greece, Holland and the Scandinavian countries, they are proving themselves a focal point in Jewish life. They have become a major factor in the rebuilding of community life and institutions destroyed during more than a decade of Nazism and war.”

The facilities of the new Center include a large auditorium, a gymnasium, classrooms, library, music and art studios and a snack bar. More than 100 members were enrolled in the Center prior to its dedication, and the full activity program is now under way. Speakers at the dedication exercises, in addition to Mr. Jordan, included Max Gottschalk, president of the Central Jewish Community of Brussels; and Charles Janssens, Mayor of the Borough of Izelies, where the Center is located.

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