It seems the French social welfare system has no equal. We visited one of the oldest Jewish social support organizations, the OSE (Œuvre de Secours aux Enfants), whose origins extend back to St. Petersburg, Russia in 1912, when the Interior Ministry of the Russian Empire granted permission for the establishment of the OZE (Obshchestvo Zdravookhraneniya Evreev), the Jewish health-protection association. Russia was enveloped in heavy anti-Semitism at the time and pogroms were frequent. The granting of permission for the organization coincided in time with the beginning of the movement for Jewish cultural autonomy. The main goal of OZE was to establish a modern social welfare and health-care system for Jews for whom medical care was inaccessible in the Russian Empire. The organization established a branch in France in 1933.
During the Nazi occupation Jewish children were ruthlessly murdered. Various ways to save them were found, either sending them out of the country, or hiding them. One of the more active players in rescuing Jewish children was the Œuvre de Secours aux Enfants organization, or OSE, who saved hundreds of children.