Papers of Hilde Jarecki

Scope and Content

Papers of Hilde Jarecki including biographical papers, material for publication and papers relating to the playgroup associations.

Administrative / Biographical History

Before the uprising of Hitler, Hilde Jarecki came to England and was involved in bringing children safely to Britain via The Kindertransport. She spent around 20 years working as the Senior Professional Advisor for the London Playgroup Association. As part of her involvement, early on she carried play equipment to the new playgroups, gave advice to members, organised meetings and had a major role in the playgroup movement. Hilde was the first person to introduce mothers helping in the playgroup that their child attended.

She is perhaps best known for her book 'Playgroups: a Practical Approach', which was published by Faber in 1975. The publicity information for this book states: "Hilde Jarecki, a professional adviser who has spent eight years as an organizer and tutor for the Inner London Playgroups Association, has written an essentially practical handbook based on her extensive experience, which will be invaluable for those employed full time in pre-school playgroup work and for parents of young children." In the foreword of the book, written by Edna Oakeshott, March 1974, she describes Hilde Jarecki as: "a pioneer who has given of herself unsparingly to establish a smooth-running organization on a professional footing. No more living recommendation could be provided than her vivid pictures of children and their parents in the playgroup setting."

Hilde continued her pioneering work within the playgroup movement until she was unable to continue on the grounds of ill health.

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Jarecki, Hilde. Playgroups: A Practical Approach. Faber: London (1975).