Le­viev cuts back on schools

The Jewish Chronicle - - World News -

THE LARGEST Jewish ed­u­ca­tion net­work in Europe is to cut back as a re­sult of the global fi­nan­cial cri­sis.

Or Avner, founded by bil­lion­aire Lev Le­viev, is to “ra­tio­nalise” op­er­a­tions due to a short­fall in do­na­tions.

Op­er­at­ing more than 100 Jewish schools in Rus­sia, the for­mer Soviet Union, Ger­many, Is­rael and the US, it is plan­ning to cut back par­tic­u­larly in places where there are only small com­mu­ni­ties and lit­tle Jewish ac­tiv­ity.

Or Avner, named for Mr Le­viev’s fa­ther, works to­gether with the Fed­er­a­tion of Jewish Com­mu­ni­ties of the CIS, the most pow­er­ful Jewish or­gan­i­sa­tion in Rus­sia and its rep­re­sen­ta­tives.

The Is­raeli gov­ern­ment and the Jewish Agency have also cut the bud­get of Heftz­iba, its school pro­gramme in the CIS.

“They have no choice now but to look at places where they have in­vested money in the past,” a se­nior ed­u­ca­tor in Rus­sia told the JC, “and de­cide where they haven’t been ef­fec­tive and close things down there.”

A spokesman for Mr Le­viev said: “Mr Le­viev does not in­tend to stop con­tribut­ing and act­ing to en­sure the fu­ture of Jewish ed­u­ca­tion in the di­as­pora, even at a more lim­ited level due to the global fi­nan­cial sit­u­a­tion over the next few months.” AN­SHEL PF­EF­FER

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