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J.D.C. Welcomes Efforts of Other Groups to Raise Emergency Relief Funds

April 3, 1929
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The Joint Distribution Committee welcomes the efforts of groups of American Jews who are interested in bringing immediate succor to suffering Jews in countries affected by famine and other adverse conditions. The Committee is carrying on emergency relief work within the limits of its funds, having set aside an emergency fund of $31,000, of which $60,000 has been forwarded to Bessarabia and $50,000 for the suffering town Jews in Russia. The Joint Distribution Committee will distribute any funds raised for emergency relief in countries designated by the groups. These statements were made by David A. Brown, national chairman of the United Jewish Campaign, in reply to an inquiry of the “Jewish Daily Bulletin” in connection with Sunday’s conference called by the American Jewish Congress, the Roumanian-Bessarabian Relief Committee and the United Roumanian Jews of America, which decided to seek $500,000 for immediate aid.

In his reply Mr. Brown stated:

“The questions put to be by the ‘Jewish Daily Bulletin’ in connection with the Bessarabian situation. I take it, was prompted by the effort about to be launched by the Bessarabian Jews in this country to raise five hundred thousand dollars.

“Practically all of the questions you have asked-

“1. With reference to the expenditure of the Joint Distribution Committee for famine relief in Bessarabia;

“2. The actual facts with respect to Jewish suffering as reported by Dr. Bernhard Kahn, our European representative;

“3. The position of the Joint Distribution Committee with respect to mak- (Continued on Page 4)

ing further allotments for emergency work;

“4. What proportion of the $310,000 appropriated for emergency will be applicable to Bessarabia;

“-are answered in the article which appeared in your issue of Friday, March 29, under the caption, ‘J.D.C.’ Forwards $110,000 of Emergency Relief Fund to Europe.’ And it would be an imposition upon your readers to repeat that story.

“Frankly, I am extremely happy at the action of the Bessarabian Jews in coming, though a little late, to the assistance of their own flesh and blood in that country during this period of famine. I sincerely hope they will raise this five hundred thousand dollar fund and send it on its mercy mission, either directly to the social groups in Bessarabia or to the J.D.C. for special famine relief in Bessarabia. I might also urge other similar groups to raise special funds at this time to meet emergency conditions such as we have in Moldavia, Lithuania, Poland, and in Russia.

“The limited amount of funds received through the United Jewish Campaign can only do a minimum of relief and reconstruction work. Since September, 1925, we have been able to send over to these many countries approximately fifteen millions of dollars. I have realized, and have so stated time and time again, that instead of a twenty-five million dollar campaign, our campaign should have been for one hundred million dollars and more if we, the Jews of America, were to do more than a minimum.

“To stretch the generosity of the Jews of America to that extent would have been in my judgment an impossible undertaking and one fraught with great danger.

“Cablegrams are continually coming from all parts of Europe citing the appalling conditions in certain sections and it is heart-rending to realize how little we can do because of the limited funds which we have at our disposal.

“As I dictate this statement there comes to my desk a cablegram from Dr. Joseph A. Rosen from which I quote: ‘Just completed trip through number of towns and cities in Kiev, Odessa districts; situation declassed Jewish population after extremely severe winter and general deficiency foodstuffs appalling.’

“This cablegram tells of an immediate need that must be cared for at once if the people are not to suffer greater hardships. Resolutions, good wishes, mean nothing to these people. To tell them to wait until such time as we can help them constructively does not satisfy the hunger, care for the sick, or provide for the orphan.

“The J.D.C. has carried and is carrying a great responsibility. It realizes how little it can do even with the enormous sums that have been contributed, and yet our work over a long period of years has been a life-saving and soul-saving effort.

“I say to the Bessarabian Jews, to the Lithuanian Jews, to the Moldavian Jews, the Russian Jews, and the Polish Jews, if it lies within their possibilities to raise quickly large sums of money, in the name of God and in the name of our people do so and do so quickly. The J.D.C. will distribute these funds in the countries designated. Our organization stands ready to render this special service and the people of these countries will bless you for it.”

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