Quaker Studies

The Friends Relief Service and Displaced People in Europe After the Second World War, 1945–48*

Quaker Studies (2013), 17, (2), 223–243.

Abstract

From 1945–48 the Friends Relief Service (FRS) cared for refugees, displaced people and expellees in post-war Germany. Not all FRS members were Quakers but all were committed to the belief that humanitarian work was an expression of Christian commitment. This set Quaker relief apart from the new, highly professionalised model being pioneered by the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA). FRS work has been neglected because of the historiographical focus upon UNRRA. Yet accounts by FRS workers indicate that, despite many compromises and shortcomings, their belief system enabled them to provide a crucial and unique type of relief service in the aftermath of war.

The Friends Relief Service and Displaced People in Europe After the Second World War, 1945–48*

Abstract

From 1945–48 the Friends Relief Service (FRS) cared for refugees, displaced people and expellees in post-war Germany. Not all FRS members were Quakers but all were committed to the belief that humanitarian work was an expression of Christian commitment. This set Quaker relief apart from the new, highly professionalised model being pioneered by the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA). FRS work has been neglected because of the historiographical focus upon UNRRA. Yet accounts by FRS workers indicate that, despite many compromises and shortcomings, their belief system enabled them to provide a crucial and unique type of relief service in the aftermath of war.


Details

Author details

Reid, Fiona

Gemie, Sharif