St. Petersburg, Russia – Our Work Began in 1998

September 10, 2012 at 3:48 pm | Posted in St. Petersburg | Leave a comment

Guest post by Neil Waxman

JCF’s work began during the worst economic conditions facing Russia since WWII: the ruble crashed, the stock market fell 75%, and the government defaulted on its debt. We began by helping those who could not help themselves: elderly, who were immobile, living in Stalinesk 5th floor walk apartments, with little food and even less medical attention; an under supply of Jewish kindergartens, and childcare, and where it existed, conditions were less than substandard. Our goals were to focus most of our resources and attention in a barbell sort of approach on those two cohort groups; however, to ultimately work toward the middle: teens, young adults, families, and the like. Some of those children, who attended our kindergartens, are now our camp counselors, and some of those teens who were active in Hillel are now working in the Jewish organizations, which we have helped to establish.Image

Roll forward to September 9th 2005:  after 7 years of very heavy lifting by the American Joint Distribution Committee (JDC), other international Jewish foundations and organizations, in conjunction with the Jewish Federation of Cleveland (JFC), it’s staff and lay leaders, and our partners in the St. Petersburg Jewish Community, the ribbon was cut on the YESOD Continue Reading St. Petersburg, Russia – Our Work Began in 1998…

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