The Associated helps revitalize communities worldwide while providing resources to ensure that the most vulnerable Jews have a chance at a better life.
By 1941, the Baltimore Jewish community was inundated by organizations requesting funds to support the victims of Nazism. As a result, the Jewish Welfare Fund was created to raise money for national and overseas agencies concerned with saving the lives of Nazi victims.
Following World War II, the Associated Jewish Charities, through the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) and the Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI), worked to reinvigorate Jewish communities destroyed during the Nazi era. When Communism fell in Eastern Europe, the organizations helped Jews, many of whom did not know they were Jewish, rediscover their roots through programs like Camp Szarvas in Hungary. For nearly 70 years, Szarvas has reconnected campers from over 30 countries to their Jewish heritage.
With the creation of the State of Israel, the situation for Jews living in Muslim countries became perilous. Between 1948 and 1950, the JDC and JAFI resettled hundreds of thousands of Jews in Israel. Operation Magic Carpet transported Jews from Yemen, Aden, Eritrea and Saudi Arabia to Israel while Jews from Iraq and Kurdistan arrived through Operations Ezrah and Nehemiah.
In 1991, with the Ethiopian civil war worsening, Israel carried out an airlift, dubbed Operation Solomon, of more than 14,000 Ethiopian Jews to Israel, which was completed in 36 hours, with 34 Israeli aircraft involved in nonstop flights.
Today, The Associated continues to support Jews around the world, from Venezuelans facing financial ruin from record inflation to French Jews escaping antisemitism.
With the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, 70 years of Soviet oppression took its toll. Very few knew of their Jewish heritage. In response, Baltimore decided to form the Baltimore-Odessa Partnership in 1992 to help revitalize the Jewish community and support its needs.
In the past three decades, the Partnership has provided food, medicine and other basic necessities to help those struggling. Children and teens attended winter and summer Jewish camps, supported by the Partnership, that spark lasting Jewish identity.