MAY 27, 1944
NEW YORK, Friday—Yesterday afternoon, I went to a meeting at the Russell Sage Foundation of the Protestant Council of the City of New York, an organization through which various denominations in the Protestant Church have joined together to consolidate their efforts for practical work in New York City. They are trying to help with the problem of juvenile delinquency; they are attempting to do better work for the servicemen and their families. And they are coordinating their work in various fields. They are trying to make the church a power in the everyday lives of people, and that is the best way I know of to increase the interest of people in the church.
My opportunity to meet with the Council came through my interest in the Wiltwyck School, which happens to be at Esopus, across the river from Hyde Park. This school is one of the places to which judges in New York City courts can send children whose homes do not provide them with the proper environment. The school takes charge of the children and tries to make them face their problems. The members of the organization also work with the families so that the children may return to a better environment than they had in the past and may not be forced into the same temptations again.
At six-thirty I dined with a new group called "The Youth of all Nations." This is a name which the children themselves voted to adopt. They are children of many ages, many races and many religions, but they have all come to this country as refugees, perhaps after having lived in two or three other countries. The organization has grown out of the desire of one little ten year old girl to write down her experiences in order to help other children. Now the members of the group are writing to people in the government, asking how they can be useful. They write letters to children in other countries, and make every newcomer to this country they can find more welcome. They help them to gain an understanding and a sense of security in their new homes. We have made great efforts in the past to bring our children in contact with children of other countries, so here is one bridge which we should not ignore.
I left this dinner in time to reach the dinner given in honor of Mr. Walter White at 8:30. Mr. Wendell Willkie opened the speeches by a very delightful and informal address. He gave $5,000 from the royalties of his book, "One World" to the NAACP, of which Mr. Walter White has been executive secretary for the past 25 years. The whole evening was a tribute of which any man would be proud at the end of such a period of achievement.