Social and Charitable Organizations

Social and Charitable Organizations

Social service Jewish agencies were established as early as 1906 with the Hebrew Ladies’ Helping Hand (as well as fraternal societies offering both sick and death benefits). In 1911, the Young Men’s Hebrew Association was formed. It offered classes in Yiddish and Americanization and was the headquarters for all Jewish activities, including the War Relief Welfare Drive, the Keren Hayesod, Zionist meetings and even the organizational meeting for the Tifereth Israel Congregation. Other societies that helped in the general development of the Jew were the Young Women’s Hebrew Association, the National Council of Jewish Women (established in 1915), and the Haym Salomon Lodge of B’Nai Brith.

One of the pictures below is the charter of the Workmen’s Circle, a fraternal organization which founded a branch (# 723) in New Bedford around 1900. A main benefit of membership was cemetery rights, and another was sick benefits. The group had its own doctor that members could go to for a set price. Meetings were held in Cornell Hall, on Pleasant Street. According to some, it was mostly North End residents who joined. The charter at right is from a Fairhaven branch from 1936.

Program cover for the New England YMHA and YWHA convention held in New Bedford in 1922
Program cover for the New England YMHA and YWHA convention held in New Bedford in 1922 
Hebrew Ladies Helping Hand Poster Workmans circle charter 

YWHA Group on an outing, (date unknown
YWHA Group on an outing, (date unknown)

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