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JDC Reshaping Overseas Operations

The Joint Distribution Committee has been reshaping its overseas operations in order to meet the challenges of the times, David Horowitz, director general of the worldwide relief agency said at the closing session of the JDC’s annual conference here. He said the new areas of operations are added health and welfare services in Israel to help that country with its social problems; new youth activities to strengthen Jewish communal life in Western Europe and Iran; and re-oriented Jewish social and medical services in Eastern Europe and North Africa. Since World War II the JDC has benefited 321,000 adults and children.

Samuel L. Haber, executive vice chairman, said that some immediate needs remained unmet because of lack of funds. He cited as an example Rumania, where of 100,000 Jews, a high percentage are aged or destitute. He said the JDC tried to meet their basic needs but there were several thousand marginal cases which it could not assist. Haber reported that in 1972 the JDC will again require over $23 million to assist some 300,000 Jews in distress in 25 countries. He noted that 40 percent of the JDC budget is allocated for health, welfare and education programs in Israel.

He said more than $1 million goes to support ORT vocational training programs in Israel. In Europe, Haber said, the JDC will have to spend $6.1 million by the end of 1971 to help more than 164,000 needy Jews. The largest sum disbursed in Western Europe went for the care and maintenance of transmigrants. In Eastern Europe the bulk of the JDC program was concentrated in Rumania. He said the JDC continues to function in Morocco, Tunisia and Iran where some 45,000 Jews were assisted during this year.

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