TOZ Summer Camps Modern Welfare for Weak and Exhausted Jewish Children in Poland, 1924–1939

Rakefet Zalashik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In interwar Poland, what was regarded as a more scientific approach to children’s health care became increasing popular. In this environment, the Towarzystwo Ochrony Zdrowia Ludności Żydowskiej sought to improve the physical state of poor Jewish children. Initially TOZ summer colonies were established by local Jewish organizations in eastern Europe with the support of the American Jewish Distribution Committee, with the goal of providing emergency aid during and immediately after the First World War. This aim was superseded by that of providing long-term facilities which would contribute to the improvement in the health of the Jews by implementing preventative and social medicine, including the provision of hygienic living conditions, better nutrition, and the encouragement of physical exercise. The colonies and semi-colonies established by the organization thus came to play an important role in the lives of the children and their parents and emerged as an important institution for the Jews in interwar Poland, who sought to safeguard the health of their young generation without significant governmental support.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)162-180
Number of pages19
JournalPolin: Studies in Polish Jewry
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2024

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Literature and Literary Theory
  • Religious studies


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