TEL AVIV – The German government will increase funding for Holocaust survivors all over the world by $600 million over the next three years, the largest single increase to date.
An additional $200 million for 2016-2017 and $400 million for 2018 will be added to $1 billion already secured by the Conference on Jewish Material Claims against Germany in 2013, Ynet news reported.
“We commend the government of Germany for recognizing its continuing obligation to victims of the Holocaust more than 70 years after liberation,” said former U.S. ambassador to the European Union Stuart Eizenstat, who led the Claims Conference’s negotiation team.
“We have worked exhaustively to arrive at this agreement with the German government. Holocaust survivors, now in their final years, should know of our total commitment to trying to ensure they live in dignity with the help they need.”
The money will be spent on homecare for some 67,000 Holocaust survivors around the world. 121,000 survivors are registered to receive support through 240 different organizations in 46 states, the report said.
Whereas, until now, survivors were entitled to a maximum of 25 hours per week of homecare, the expanded budget will mean that survivors of ghettos and concentration camps could receive unlimited hours.
“Homecare is a key component of providing a dignified life to Holocaust survivors,” Claims Conference Executive Vice President Greg Schneider told JTA. “By waiving a cap for people who were in camps and ghettos, the German government has shown that they understand that and are willing to address the need.”
$450 million of the total sum will be transferred to survivors in Israel. There are roughly 30,000 survivors living in Israel today.