Patron of foundation is Diana Princess of Saxony
who is also responsible for its representation in Germany.
In the fall of 2008 two charming Spanish ladies, Rina and her daughter Galit, visited Jewish Cemetery at Lotnicza Street. They came to see a gravestone of Rina's mother regrettably significantly damaged. It was Rina's first visit in Poland after more than 50 years, for Galit - first ever in her life.
They were not the only or the first one shocked after they saw how neglected and demolished this necropolis is. While turning on her camcorder Galit said that people have to see it otherwise nothing would change here. Conversation with Rina and Galit, which lasted few hours, gave me a kick and I came to conclusion that without any formal help we would not be able to effectively help the cemetery. The idea of setting up a foundation came from my sister who told me about the Jewish cemetery in The Hague (the Netherlands) that was renovated thanks to donations. We were fed up with an infirmity hanging above "our" cemetery. We knew, it must be possible even in Poland, to take permanent and effective care of the cemetery that for dozen or so years has been neglected.
Foundation of Jewish Cemetery in Wroclaw at Lotnicza Street has been established by an authenticated deed signed up on the 30th October 2008 in Danuta Prus' notary's office in Wrocław. The deed is based on a declaration of the will of the founder Małgorzata Frąckowiak.
The foundation aims to take care of and restore the Jewish cemetery, protect the woods within the area of necropolis and develop an educational program that promotes Jewish history, culture and religion as well as tolerance. This plan will take years to fulfill. Even after the place is cleaned up, it still need to be maintained in a good condition and educational actions have to be carried on.
What do we want to start with? First of all the luxuriant greenery that basically took control over this place need to be cleaned. Only then it will be possible to estimate how many gravestones survived and how many of them still can be rescued. At the same time documentary works will be conducted. Actually we are already doing that. The final step of cleaning any field is a photo session. Each gravestone is being taking picture of, described and added to our list.
This is the most important part of our work. Why? Because deceased who are buried here are the most important ones. We make this effort for them, to commemorate their memory and ensure them eternal peace. For them and their ancestors who are looking for their roots. Years after the WW II they arrive to the cemetery at Lotnicza street and ask desperately: how can I find a gravestone of my grandfather? Grandmother? How to find a little stone in the middle of a huge jungle? Those people need our help, and we - as hosts - are obliged to help them.
Of course working on such scale requires lots of money and many hands willing to help. That is why the foundation counts on any person willing to add even a cent or his/her own spare time and willingness to work on the cemetery.
We are planning to find sponsors although it might be little bit difficult right now. We would like to make use of public founds both national and European. However to start with any works we need an approval from the owner of the cemetery - Association of Jewish Communities in the Republic of Poland, Wrocław office. The talks started few months ago but we cannot see their end yet. Jewish Community in Wrocław seems to be completely uninterested.
Where are we looking for our chance? To get as many people as possible interested in this unique cemetery. The more people talk loudly about this place and its needs, the bigger chance that seed of information will reach favourable conditions. That was the case with Diana von Sachsem, princess of Saxony, who actively supports our actions mainly in Germany.
For us, people involved in the foundation, it is also an extremely unique place - beautiful, with an atmosphere of the mystery soaking through it. It is a witness of the history we should all remember about and protect against demolition.
Bank accounts of the Foundation of Jewish Cemetery at Lotnicza Street in Wrocław:
Bank Millenium S.A.
ul. Piłsudskiego 49/57
SWIFT number: BIGBPLPW
- For donations in Polish złoty (PLN) - 97 1160 2202 0000 0001 3362 0729
- For donations in Euros (EUR) - 82 1160 2202 0000 0001 3362 0805
- For donations in American dollars (USD) - 67 1160 2202 0000 0001 3362 0881