Jewish charity federation celebrates its 1921 founding


January 21, 1996

As the third decade of this century began, Baltimore's Jewish community had 20 organizations in place to help the needy within it. The concept of organized charity has deep roots in Judaism, and Baltimore Jewry was doing its part to continue the tradition. But in 1920 a question was raised: Why not unite those 20 separate charities into a single philanthropic and community-building organization? The unification proposal got the nod and in January 1921, the Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore was born.

With that amalgamation 75 years ago this month, all local Jewish philanthropic organizations were placed under one central administration.

Today the Associated, as the organization is known, serves the local Jewish community through its 16 constituent agencies and also provides funds for services to Jews in need throughout the world. It is recognized nationally and internationally as a source of Jewish communal leadership, fund raising and innovation in programming.

The Associated plays a major role in Baltimore's general philanthropic life. It is a corporate and founding member of the United Way of Central Maryland and works in partnership with other community agencies. The organization also creates and participates in coalitions to combat prejudice and to speak out for social justice on behalf of all people.

The photographs shown on this page and the next two document the work of various Associated agencies over the years. Many of the photographs will be part of a retrospective exhibit opening today at the Jewish Historical Society.

'The Associated: A 75th Anniversary Retrospective'

Where: The Jewish Historical Society, 15 Lloyd St. in East Baltimore.

When: Today through June 2. Noon to 4 p.m. Sundays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.

Admission: $2 for adults, free for society members and children 12 and under.

Call: (410) 732-6400.

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