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View all events 1933–1938

December 1935

Creation of Lebensborn Program

The Nazi regime sought to racially reshape German society. As part of this effort, the Nazis created the Lebensborn program. The program encouraged so-called “Aryan” Germans deemed “hereditarily healthy” to have children. It provided unwed pregnant women with medical care in discreet residences so that they could give birth far away from the potential judgment of family members and neighbors. Under this program, newborns were only released to their mothers’ care if the authorities agreed. Many of the children were placed with adoptive families instead. 

The Lebensborn program expanded during World War II. German authorities kidnapped foreign children and placed them with German families. The families then raised the children to believe that they were German.

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