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A seminar in Sejny dedicated to the issue of Jewish heritage protection


Participants of the seminar   

A seminar concerning protection of Jewish heritage in Poland and Byelorussia and methods of Jewish heritage popularization by means of modern multimedia devices took place on the 29th and 30th of July in Sejny. The seminar was a part of a project called “Polish-Byelorussian summer school for culture animators. Transfer of experience concerning protection of Jewish heritage”, which is financed from a program “Przemiany w Regionie-RITA” launched by Fundacja Edukacji dla Demokracji (Education for Democracy Foundation).

“Holocaust” Foundation from Mińsk and “Ośrodek Brama Grodzka-Teatr NN” (The "Grodzka Gate – NN Theatre” Centre) from Lublin were partners in the project’s implementation.


Grzegorz Kolacz presentation   

Eight people took part in the project:

Inna Gerasimova (art historian, doctor of history, managing director of Museum of Jewish History and Culture of Belarus, vice president of the Association of Religious Communities and Jewish Organizations in Belarus),

Tamara Viarshytskaya (managing director of the Historical and Etnographic Museum in Nowogródek)

Zanna Kaspiarovich (history teacher of a high school in Iwacewicze)

Elena Moroz (computer science student, member of Hillel organization)

Valiantsina Maroz (PR department director of Minsk Jewish Community House, an employee of JDC),

Yahor Stralkou (student, member of Hillel organization),

Aliaksandra Kremen (student, member of Hillel organization),

Mikalai Khomich (student, member of Hillel organization),

Ala Sidarovich (emplyee of ”Zołak” education center, ethnographer).


Visit in Borderland Center   

During the first day of the seminar its participants visited Ośrodek Pogranicze Sztuk, Kultur i Narodów (the Center of Borderline Arts, Cultures and Nations), where Michał Moniuszko, an employee of the center, talked about the aim of the center and its activity. The tour included Dom Pogranicza (Borderline House), Biała Synagoga (White Synagogue) and the building of old Yeshiva. The guests saw an exhibition, received educational materials and watched a film about the center’s activity concerning Jewish culture. Later, seminar’s participants visited Sejneńska Land Museum.

In the afternoon, guests listened to Albert Stankowsky’s lecture about the state of preservation of Jewish heritage objects in Poland and possibilities of their protection ensured by Polish law. The second lecture was delivered by Grzegorz Kołacz and concerned the use of Web 2.0 technology in the popularization of knowledge about Jewish heritage monuments. After presenting the project of the Museum of the History of Polish Jews, Grzegorz Kołacz talked about museum’s portal “Virtual Sztetl”, its aims, rules of functioning and its content. Both lectures were followed by participants discussions.


Participants of the seminar at the cemetery in Jeleniewo   

During the second day seminar’s participants listened to Emil Majuka from The "Grodzka Gate – NN Theatre” Center, who talked about center’s animation activity concerning sustaining the memory of Jews from Lublin and education in tolerance promotion. Later, the group had a sightseeing trip around the area. A coach took participants to: Sejny (Jewish cemetery), Krasnopol (Jewish cemetery and the building of the old synagogue), Suwałki (old buildings and places where Jewish community’s buildings were situated), Jeleniewo (Jewish cemetery).