Polish students clean up local Jewish cemetery

Polish students clean Jewish cemetery, learn to read the headstones' Hebrew inscriptions.

Katarzyna Markusz, JTA,

Jewish cemetery in Poland (illustrative)
Jewish cemetery in Poland (illustrative)
Flash 90

Students of a school in northern Poland cleaned up the local Jewish cemetery and learned to read the Hebrew inscriptions on the gravestones.

The students in Zalewo were joined in the task by their teachers and a priest.

Before World War II, the town of Zalewo was located in Germany. A dozen or so Jewish families lived there. During the war the town was almost completely destroyed. A Jewish cemetery with some tombstones survived. Today, some 3,000 people live in the town.

Local activists take care of the Jewish cemetery. This month they invited an employee of the Polin Museum of the History of Polish Jews, Krzysztof Bielawski, to conduct a course for students to learn to read Hebrew inscriptions on the gravestones.

Last week, students began cleaning the cemetery. They were accompanied by school deputy director Elzbieta Miedzinska and local priest Michal Bika. The gravestones were washed, rubbish was removed, and greenery was trimmed.

These activities are co-financed by the Polish-American Freedom Foundation.