Rachel ‘Rae’ Barash

Rachel Barash was a key person in Manchester involved in caring for the Boys, who arrived in the city between 1945 and 1946.

Barasch was born on Great Clowes Street, Manchester in 1902.

Both of her parents were immigrants from Europe. Her father was from Kracow, Poland and her mother was from Botishan in Roman. She came to Britain aged 24 where she met and married her husband. He had come to the UK  as a representative of the Welsbach Incandescent Mantles.

They settled in Manchester and ran the Incandescent Lighting Company, which was later converted into an electrical supply company.

Barash went to Grecian Street School, Salford then to Salford Secondary School in Bexley Square. At 16, she left secondary school and went to the High School of Commerce.

In the 1920s, Barash began voluntary work helping with the after-care of Jewish children leaving the ‘Delamere Fresh Air Home and School for Delicate Children’, which was founded by Margaret Landon. Barash worked with Langdon for many years on the School Camps Association, which provided holidays for children.

In 1933, Barash helped to establish and run the Hospitality Committee, which helped German-Jewish refugee girls to find work in British homes as au pairs. The committee provided pocket money, domestic classes and English lessons.

By 1938, the number of refugees coming to England had grown too much for the Hospitality Committee to manage, so Barash helped to form the Jewish Refugee Aid Committee and was appointed Honorary Secretary.

The Jewish Refugee Aid Committee was funded by the Central British Fund (CBF), Barash worked with the CBF as the Public Assistant of Refugees.

Barash was in Windermere when the first group of the Boys arrived and she spent ten days there getting to know them.

This profile was written by Ruby Kwartz.

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