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700 Jews Reported Living in Curacao; W.j.c. to Aid Community

The development of a united community in Curacao and steps to strengthen the content of Jewish life in the community were discussed at World Jewish Congress headquarters here today by Rabbi Simeon J. Maslin of the United Sephardic Congregations of Curacao.

Rabbi Maslin told World Jewish Congress officials that there are now 700 Jews living in Curacao in a total population of about 125,000. The present community is but a shadow of the considerable Jewish population that had existed until about a century ago. He reported that there are about 90 Jewish children in the community and he and his assistant have initiated Jewish education classes for the children as well as for adults.

Discussing the situation of the small Caribbean Jewish communities generally, Rabbi Maslin reported on his attempts to strengthen Jewish life in the area. He expressed the belief that improved contacts between the various small communities would help each in its Jewish survival. In this connection he is now working on the establishment of a speakers circuit which would bring a number of lecturers on Jewish topics to the various communities in the area, he said.

Rabbi Maslin also discussed with the World Jewish Congress officers a project to organize a summer camp for Jewish children from the Caribbean area. This had aroused considerable interest in the communities he had visited and he was now actively seeking support for the project. The World Jewish Congress Cultural Department undertook to provide a selection of books on Jewish subjects as a nucleus for a library for the Curacao community.

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