(JTA) — Chabad will establish six new student centers on college campuses in Northern Europe over the next year.
The first of the centers — in Debrecen, Hungary — already has opened.
Rabbi Moshe Kotlarsky, chairman of the Chabad on Campus International Foundation, unveiled the plans during a recent conference in upstate New York for Chabad-Lubavitch campus directors.
There are at least 170 Chabad on Campus centers around the world.
The new European campus centers "will serve as a crucial step in reaching out to the tens of thousands of Jewish students across the continent by providing stimulating social and educational programming and a home away from home for Jewish students from all backgrounds," said Rabbi Eli Brackman, a coordinator in the new European expansion and the Chabad rabbi at Oxford University in England.
Brackman said the new centers will help in the effort to stand up to anti-Semitism and the continued delegitimization of Israel and Jewish observance in Europe.
The new centers are being funded by David Slager, who also has underwritten the creation of 13 student centers on campuses throughout the United Kingdom since 2000.