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N. Y. Jewish Federation Announces $1,000,000 Project for Jobs for Aged

June 27, 1962
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The Federation of Jewish Philanthropies announced today plans for a joint program with federal and state agencies to demonstrate how local communities can provide job opportunities for disabled persons over 60 who want or need work.

The project will involve expenditures of $1,000,000 over a five-year period. It is being started in New York City and the Coney Island section of Brooklyn by federal and state officials of vocational rehabilitation agencies in cooperation with the Federation’s Employment and Guidance Service, Robert Rau, president of the Federation agency, said.

Abraham Ribicoff, Secretary of the Department of Health, Education and Welfare in endorsing the project, said: “The Federation of Jewish Philanthropies in cooperation with the Federal Government will be showing the rest of the nation the worthwhile work that can be done by nature but handicapped people who will have been granted their deepest wish-to be allowed to live useful lives. My prediction is that long before the five years are up, people in many other parts of the country will be setting up similar projects.”

The project will be financed jointly by the United States Vocational Rehabilitation Office of the HEW department, and the Federation. The object is to mobilize jobless disabled aged persons, through special counseling, job training and placement for a return to jobs in industry. The Federal Government will provide $750,000, with annual grants of $150,000. The Federation has pledged annual contributions of $75,000.

Disabled clients will receive vocational rehabilitation training in workshop facilities created as “field laboratories” for the project in which they will polish old skills and learn new ones in realistic working conditions. The workshops are one phase of the six-phase project.

A pilot group of 200 men and women are currently taking part in the project in the Federation agency’s mid-town workshop facilities and at its counseling and job placement headquarters here. Capacities of clients will range from those who can be placed in industry with little or no vocational training to those who cannot work full time but who can benefit from limited work opportunities in the areas in which they live.

All persons will be paid commensurate with their work output. The Federation’s agency will be responsible for all aspects of planning and coordination with its interviewers encouraging clients to enter phases consistent with their highest capacities. Those proven to be ready for jobs will be registered for placement. This service includes counseling, planned activity in job hunting and job leads.

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