Wednesday, February 1st | 10 Shevat 5783

December 29, 2021 9:14 am

Holocaust Survivors to Receive $200 Million in Emergency COVID-19 Relief Funds From Germany

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An empty square is seen at the former Nazi concentration camp in Sachsenhausen on the 75th anniversary of its liberation by Soviet and US troops, near Berlin, Germany, April 17, 2020. Picture taken with a drone. REUTERS/Hannibal Hanschke – Germany will distribute a total of $200 million in emergency funding to approximately 150,000 Jewish victims of Nazi persecution to help them cope with the COVID-19 pandemic, according to The Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.

The funding of about $1,400 per person is part of a Supplemental Hardship Fund Payment that was negotiated last year and originally planned to be distributed in two payments by the end of 2022. The German government agreed to expedite the payments to help Holocaust survivors with financial burdens brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and now the spread of the Omicron variant, JTA reported.

Recipients of the Supplemental Hardship Fund Payment are predominantly Russian speakers who faced Nazi persecution but did not endure concentration camps.

Those who already received the first payment of $1,400 as part of the Supplemental Hardship Fund will receive the second payment now, and recipients who have not received any of the funds qualify to receive both payments together now.

Greg Schneider, executive vice president of the Claims Conference, said roughly half of the recipients live in Israel. He added, “As the cost of living rises and as the pandemic makes everyday life more complicated for the elderly especially, we’re able to pay about half of the world population of Holocaust survivors a significant amount.”

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