Did you know that an autumnal clearing makes all the difference to the long term maintenance of Jewish cemeteries? And here’s why… This week, the ESJF visited the Nadvirna Jewish cemetery in Ukraine, one of the few sites which the ESJF has fenced and protected that also has received additional sponsorship for yearly clearings.
During the clearing, the ESJF’s team carefully mowed the grass and removed any litter or rubbish as well as overgrowth that appeared over the summer months. In particular, attention was paid to removing bushes or small trees in order to reduce the workload of clearing in the following summer, which can be a difficult and strenuous task.
This not only maintains the condition of the cemetery and its tombstones but also shows that the site is actively being taken care of and thus reduces the chance of vandalism or other crimes. Consequently, after the physical fencing and demarcation of the cemetery’s boundaries, the maintenance of the cemetery is essential to the long term preservation of the burial site.
That’s why the ESJF has decided to launch a care programme at an additional 15 Jewish cemeteries in Western Ukraine, the country where we have been most active since our foundation and where most of our staff are based, to establish a framework for the clearing of Jewish cemeteries!
Clearing costs depend on the site’s size and condition, and can range between $600 / €550 Euros for a one off clearing or $1250 / €1150 for annual maintenance. While this pilot project is currently working only in Ukraine, thanks to our network of contacts we are able to organise clearing work almost anywhere across our project countries (with the exception of Belarus). If you would like to support our efforts, please get in touch via email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Finally, we would like to thank the Nadworna Shtetl Research Group and Steven Turner for funding the work on this site and for your exceptional commitment to the preservation of Jewish heritage!