We are pleased to report our educational event, “Heritage Space: Jewish Cemetery and Urban History”, took place on the 15th of September in Kremenets’, Ukraine.
The event, funded by the Auswärtiges Amt Foreign Ministry of the Federal Republic of Germany, began in the city’s central park, where Tatyana Fedorov delivered a lecture on the significance of cemeteries in Jewish culture, the associated traditions, and the symbolism of Jewish tombstones. Attendees were then shown a screening of a documentary on the Jewish community of Kremenets’, created by “Contemporary Jewish Television” in conjunction with the German-Ukrainian project “Learning to Remember”, presented by Andre Richter and Inna Tsaruk.
The location was not chosen by chance – the park was once the site of the city’s Jewish quarter, which was later turned into a ghetto. The three streets which comprised the district, Gurney Street, Levinzon Street, and Kravetskaya Street, were destroyed during the war, and the park grounds were laid over in the intervening years. In the words of first deputy council head Nikolai Matviyuk, “Kremenets is a city with an ancient history, and its Jewish heritage is part of the historical memory of the city”.
The programme continued with an expedition to the Kremenets’ Jewish cemetery, where Tatyana Fedorov taught attendees how to read the inscriptions on Jewish tombstones and answered questions on Jewish funerary rites. As the day’s activities wrapped up, participants were presented with certificates.
We would like to express our gratitude to the Kremenets’ city council for putting this event together, in particular council head Alexei Kovalchuk and first deputy Nikolai Matviyuk, for taking the time to attend. Many thanks as well to Jewish Community of Ternopil, as well as all the teachers, students, and locals who attended the event and took part in such lively discussions about the importance of recognising Jewish Ukrainian heritage.