“Holocaust survivors are growing older and frailer and their needs are more complex than ever before. In addition to the myriad problems associated with ‘normal aging’, many survivors have numerous physical and psychological problems directly attributable to their experiences during the Holocaust.
Prolonged periods of starvation and exposure to unspeakable atrocities take their toll on body and mind. Further exacerbating their situation, more than 50% of the survivors living in New York City can be classified as ‘very poor’ or ‘near poor’ under Federal guidelines.
Through the steadfast support of The Claims Conference, UJA-Federation of New York’s Community Initiative for Holocaust Survivors (CIHS), the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA), through the Federal Government’s Administration for Community Living initiative, the Jewish Communal Fund, The German Government, New York City and New York State Governments, and the generosity of numerous individuals and foundations, Selfhelp is able to provide these high quality services to the survivors in our care.
If you (or someone you know) survived the Holocaust, you may qualify for special benefits and services, including:
• Subsidized horne care/housekeeping
• Emergency financial assistance
• European reparations
• Social programming specifically for Holocaust survivors
If you live in the New York City area, Selfhelp Community Services’ Holocaust Survivor Program may be able to connect you with these benefits. For more than eighty years, our program has been connecting Holocaust survivors to the care they need.
If you would like to speak with one of our trained social workers, please do not hesitate to contact us at 212-971-7795 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We look forward to hearing from you soon!”
“The organization was founded in 1936 under the name “Selfhelp for German Refugees” by a group of recently arrived German refugees in New York, with the mission of offering support to others who had been forced to flee. Providing services to survivors continues to be at the forefront of Selfhelp’s mission.
Who is eligible for services? And how is a survivor defined? Beyond those who survived concentration camps, the term survivor extends to anyone who disguised their Jewish identity, fled their home, went into hiding during the period of the war, or experienced persecution because of their Jewish heritage. Even those in utero until 1945 qualify as survivors.
The Holocaust survivor program has 7 sites in New York including, Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx and Nassau County. The Russian speaking population has faced severe difficulty, with 80 percent living at or below federal poverty line. The Russian population has faced challenges not only due to aging and lingering physical trauma, but lack of steady employment and negotiating language barriers.
Last year, 970 survivors approached Selfhelp, and in 2018 Selfhelp expects to surpass that number as word travels and survivors continue to come forward as they realize their eligibility.”
“Selfhelp’s services for Holocaust survivors honor the sacred pledge made by our founders: to serve as the last surviving relative to victims of Nazi persecution. This promise remains our imperative. Our overarching goal is to provide Holocaust survivors with the services they need so that they may live with the comfort and dignity they so richly deserve.
Selfhelp operates the oldest and largest program serving Holocaust survivors in North America, caring for over 4,300 elderly and frail individuals. The defining feature of Selfhelp’s program is that survivors are served by professionals who work solely with Holocaust survivors – their caseloads are not co-mingled with other elderly.
Remarkably, we have served this population for 80 years – assisting refugees before the war began, and providing vital care to Holocaust survivors since they began arriving on our shores. As this population reaches their 80s and 90s, we remain a steadfast presence in their lives, enabling them to retain their independence, dignity, and quality of life. Our program operates out of seven community-based sites, with locations in midtown Manhattan, Washington Heights, Brooklyn (2), Queens, the Bronx, and Nassau County.”