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B'nai B'rith Auckland

B'nai B'rith Auckland is involved in a wide range of activities in the areas of human rights and anti-discrimination, promoting inter-ethnic and inter-religious understanding, social justice, community welfare, youth and young adults, senior citizens' housing, education and health, and support for the State of Israel.

Far from concerning ourselves only with the Jewish community, most of these projects reach out into the wider world for the benefit of all Australians and New Zealanders.

Our Mission

B'nai B'rith International is dedicated to improving the quality of life for people around the globe. We are a national and global leader in advancing human rights; Israel advocacy; ensuring access to safe and affordable housing for low-income seniors and advocacy on vital issues concerning seniors and their families; diversity education; improving communities and helping communities in crisis. B’nai B’rith is as vital today as we were upon our founding 172 years ago. Making the world a safer, more tolerant and better place is the mission that still drives our organization.

Our History

In 1843, Henry Jones and 11 other German-Jewish immigrants gathered in Sinsheimer's Café (right) on New York's Lower East Side to confront what Isaac Rosenbourg, one of B'nai B'rith's founders, called "the deplorable condition of Jews in this, our newly adopted country."

Thus, B'nai B'rith (children of the covenant) was born.

The original members' first concrete action was creating an insurance policy that awarded members' widows $30 toward funeral expenses, and a stipend of one dollar a week for the rest of their lives. Each child would also receive a stipend and, for male children, assurance he would be taught a trade.

It is from this basis of humanitarian aid and service that a system of fraternal lodges and chapters grew in the United States and, eventually, around the world.

Many of the earliest achievements of B'nai B'rith represented firsts within the Jewish community, including aid in response to disasters:

B'nai B'rith involvement in international affairs dates to the 1870s when anti-Semitism reached new heights in Romania. Through the influence of B'nai B'rith, the U.S. government established a consulate there, and a former B'nai B'rith president, Benjamin Peixotto, was appointed the first consul.

B'nai B'rith was present at the founding of the United Nations in San Francisco and has taken an active role ever since as an NGO (nongovernmental organization) advocating for Israel and human rights at the U.N. and other international organizations.

With the graying of the American-Jewish population, service to seniors became a major focus in 1971. In that year B'nai B'rith opened its first senior residence in what would become a network of 40 senior residences in more than 25 communities across the United States and internationally. B'nai B'rith is the largest national Jewish sponsor of housing for seniors.

B'nai B'rith International has not moved far from its roots, but rather allowed these roots to grow in countries all across the globe. No other Jewish organization can point to a longer, more all-encompassing history of service to Jews and all people around the world.

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