So many Belarusian Jews at different points in history left in search of new life in other parts of the world more often than not fleeing persecution, oppression, pogroms and war. Yet in spite of the difficult, traumatic circumstances under which they left, there remains a yearning for what was left behind and indeed the Jewish people who once lived on the territory that constitutes modern day Belarus contributed and continue to impact the wider world (Jewish and non-Jewish) in the fields of Jewish religious practice, to art, to the development of Hebrew as a modern language, to music and to literature, to the film industry and to the world of commerce. Belarus also gave us most of the founding fathers of Israel.
As we have grown as a UK charity – so more and more people have connected with us from all across the USA and it became clear to us that we needed a presence in the USA. To that end, in the last few years, we have been engaged in setting up a sister charity or non-profit organisation as it is called in America. That organisation is now a going concern and operates under the name of Jewish Tapestry Project. This is a very exciting development for us and we are keen to grow our presence in the USA.
There are many ways you can get involved with the work we are doing in Belarus and here are just some:
- Commission a search to find ancestral records in the Belarus archives
- Commission a shtetl report – to find out what the town or village your ancestors came from is like today
- Commission a film of the village your family came from
- Comission our Jewish artist in Minsk to produce a work to commemorate your ancestral town or village
- Register your 13/14 year olds up to participate in the compelling ‘Making History Together’ programme which starts on February 26th. Click here for more information.
- Volunteer – we have several volunteer roles you can take up from the USA – to find out more send us an email to [email protected] or [email protected]
- Contribute your family story, copies of photographs, family recipes to our collection which will form part of the Belarus Jewish heritage route.
- Make a donation (one off, monthly or annually)
- Support a heritage project in Belarus – community building project, building restoration, cemetery memorial project
- Organise a fundraising event
- Do a personal fundraising challenge
We hope that you will be part of our campaign to put Jewish Belarus back on the world map. Every story and every connection is a thread of our history and when we weave those threads together we get a much clearer picture – just like a tapestry! This is the Together Plan and now the Jewish Tapestry Project and we invite you to be part of it.