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J.D.B. News Letter

January 4, 1928
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

(By our Moscow Correspondent)

The fifth year of activity of the Jewish Colonization Association in Soviet Russia was celebrated here at a meeting presided over by Mr. Zak, the Ica representative in Russia. Reports were delivered by Mr B. I. Fridman agriculture and agricultural co-operation, by Mr. Chelmski on the Ica’s work in ariculture and agricultural co-operation, by Mr. Rein on its Jewish land settlement work, Mr. Feigin on its work in the district of Nikopol, and by Mr. Bandamirski on its work in technical training.

Many representatives were present on behalf of the Government Commission for Jewish Land Settlement (Comzet), the Jewish Land Settlement Society (Ozet), the Agrojoint, the Ort and other organizations.

Mr. Zak said that the Ica was engaged in Russia not in philanthropic, but in reconstructive work. In 1923, when the Ica had signed its agreement with the Soviet Government, it had put to itself three aims: to assist the old Jewish colonists in the provinces of Cherson and Ekaterinoslav to build up their ruined farms, to assist the artisans and to prepare the Jewish youth for skilled work in the factories. In 1925, the Ica had entered also the field of Jewish land settlement. At the present day the Ica service extended to 49 Jewish colonies and settlements comprising 7,614 farms. In addition, the Ica was working in 378 farms outside the organized settlement movement, in 200 credit co-operative societies, comprising about 100,000 members and in 10 technical schools.

The Ica had also decided to participate in the settlement of 3,250 Jewfish families on the land.

Of the sums allocated by the Ica for the work in Russia, they had spent in the last five years 32 per cent, in the old Jewish colonies, 29 per cent in the co-op-erative societies, 11 per cent. on technical education, 8.8 per cent. on the non-systematic land settlement work, 3.1 per cent. in assistance to the non-Jewish population, and 16 per cent, in administrative expenses. For the settlement of the 3,250 families of new settlers, the Ica had assignd a sum on the basis of 1,700 roubles per family.

M. Mereszin, the leader of the Jewish Communist Sections, said that in all its branches of activity in Russia, the Ica was doing its work promptly and well. It fully realized the obligations which it had taken upon itself and it was therefore possible to cooperate with it in a practical way. The representatives of the Ica, working in the various places among the masses were doing their work properly. The Ica, he said, was doing a good and great work in Soviet Russia, but it was not on a large enough scale. The Ica ought to develop its work on a much larger scale, because nowhere else was there such a favorable field for its reconstructive work and in no other country were there such favorable conditions for its work. He hoped that the Ica would not content itself with its service to 3,250 settler families, but would take up a much more extensive activity. The Ica ougth not to limit the area of its work to the districts adjoining the old Jewish colonies. The Soviet Government was assisting the Ica and meeting it in its work of organizing and industrializng the Jewish masses.

Construction on the new Baron Hirseh school building in Memphis, Tenn., will be begun immediately, David Dermon, chairman of the building committee announced.

The building will have three stories, the ground floor being given over to a gymnasium. There will also be Sunday School rooms on the ground floor.

The second story will have a library with class rooms while on the top story will be a large assembly hall for educational, religious and social affairs. It is estimated that the building will cost $70,000.

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