Joint Distribution Committee

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Joint Distribution Committee ( JDC ; full name: American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee ), abbreviated to Joint , is an aid organization for American Jews that has been active in Europe since 1914 and is based in New York City .


Until 1937 it was headed by Felix M. Warburg and Paul Baerwald . During the 1930s, the Islamic scholar Eugen Wednesday was head of the JDC's Berlin office. During the Second World War, Joseph J. Schwartz worked as European director in neutral Lisbon and from there he managed all remaining help options.


The original purpose of the organization was to support Jewish victims of the First World War .

In 1924 the American Jewish Joint Agriculture Corporation, or Agro-Joint for short, was formed in the Soviet Union . The introduction of the state trade monopoly in the Soviet Union had led to the loss of a livelihood for many Jewish merchants. In cooperation with the Soviet authorities, Agro-Joint helped those affected to retrain for an agricultural profession. In the period from 1924 to 1938, Agro-Joint supported more than 100,000 Jews in the Soviet Union in settling in agricultural cooperatives in the Ukraine and the Crimea . In 1938, however, Agro-Joint was banned and its representatives expelled.

During the time of National Socialism, the organization alleviated the economic hardship of German Jews indirectly through donations to Jewish institutions and supported emigration from Germany. Between 1934 and 1937, the charity of the donations paid about 4.6 million dollars to the Central Committee of German Jews for relief and reconstruction. Another $ 2.3 million went to Eastern European communities. During the Second World War, the organization exhausted all remaining means of aid from neutral Lisbon to send money and food to Poland and other areas occupied by the Wehrmacht. So parcels were sent to the Theresienstadt ghetto. Here served Saly Mayer in St. Gallen as a kind of hub for financial transactions. Raoul Wallenberg's rescue operations were also financially secured.

After the Second World War, the Central Organization Committee of all Jewish Welfare Associations became the most important aid organization for the surviving Jewish displaced persons in Germany, Italy and Eastern European countries. After Israel's declaration of state, the organization organized transports for immigrants there.

The Joint was represented on October 26, 1951 in the Claims Conference in New York, at which 22 organizations represented the claims of Jewish victims as well as Israel.

With the liquidation of the last DP camp in 1957, the committee had mastered its greatest challenge. Needy Jewish communities continue to be supported.


Between 1914 and 1945, the committee was able to distribute $ 169 million in donations in addition to food deliveries. The volume of donations skyrocketed from 1945 onwards, so that from 1946 to 1950 alone, around $ 280 million could be used to support the surviving Jewish victims.

JDC Israel

Today, JDC operates the following relief organizations in Israel:

  • ASHALIM - Help for children and young people at risk and their families
  • ELKA - leadership training for laypeople, strengthening civil society, promoting inter-municipal cooperation and regional development
  • ESHEL - help for old people
  • Israel Unlimited - Help for disabled people
  • TEVET - employment agency
  • Young Adults and Immigrants - Supporting the social integration of young adults and immigrants

See also


  • Yehuda Bauer : American Jewry and the Holocaust. The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee 1939-1945. Wayne State University Press et al. a., Detroit MI 1981, ISBN 0-8143-1672-7 .
  • Yehuda Bauer: My Brother's Keeper. A History of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee 1929-1939. The Jewish Publication Society of America, Philadelphia PA 1974, ISBN 0-8276-0048-8 .
  • Gennady Estraikh: Joint Distribution Committee. In: Dan Diner (Ed.): Encyclopedia of Jewish History and Culture (EJGK). Volume 3: He-Lu. Metzler, Stuttgart / Weimar 2012, ISBN 978-3-476-02503-6 , pp. 211-214.
  • Israel Gutman et al. (Ed.): Encyclopedia of the Holocaust. Volume 2: H - P. 2nd edition. Piper, Munich et al. 1998, ISBN 3-492-22700-7 , keyword: Joint Distribution Committee.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Note: Not to be confused with Joint Anti-Fascist Refugee Committee .
  3. ^ Jew Farmers. Time Magazine, April 2, 1928, accessed January 13, 2013 (American English).
  4. ^ Synopsis: American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee. Archived from the original on October 2, 2006 ; Retrieved January 13, 2013 .