The family behind Krispy Kreme and Pret A Manger has pledged €1 million (around £897,600) for Holocaust survivors affected by COVID-19, with the British charity Jewish Care among its several beneficiaries.
Some €150,000 (£135,170) will go to Jewish Care, the community’s biggest social care organisation, which supports hundreds of survivors and refugees.
Other beneficiaries will include the Central Welfare Organisation for Jews in Germany, the US philanthropic organisation UJA Federation New York and Israel’s AMCHA, which offers mental health and social support to survivors in the country.
The fund aims to help organisations support survivors affected by the pandemic, whether through illness, self isolation or travel restrictions.
It was pledged by the Alfred Landecker Foundation in Berlin, established by the Reimann family to support Holocaust and forced labour survivors and educate future generations about the Shoah.
The wealthy German family pledged last year to donate €10 million (around £8.9 million) to organisations helping former forced labourers.
The Reinmanns – whose firm JAB Holdings has stakes in Krispy Kreme Doughnuts and Pret A Manger – said it would seek to make amends last year after new research revealed the family’s Nazi past.
The foundation estimates there are 400,000 Holocaust survivors worldwide, with 140,000 in Israel.
Its chief executive officer Dr Andreas Eberhardt said: “During these particularly difficult and uncertain times we have a responsibility towards Holocaust survivors, who have experienced a terrible trauma and tragedy in the past.
“We will need to invest in new forms of communication to ensure that their needs are met. The survivor organisations have indicated their need for new computers, mobile phones and software. The money from the foundation is also intended to buy groceries and medicine.”
Jewish Care’s chief executive officer Daniel Carmel-Brown said on Friday: “We are incredibly grateful to the Alfred Landecker Foundation for their generous donation to Holocaust survivors affected by COVID-19. This is the first major contribution to an emergency appeal that we will be launching with other communal care bodies next week.
“We need support from donors and our community now more than ever, in order to meet the needs of the most vulnerable, and we hope that our community are ready to help us meet this unprecedented challenge.”