«Le Dor Va Dor» | Annual Report 2011

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Caring for Jewish graves in the CIS © "Le Dor Va Dor" project for the Preservation of Jewish Heritage in Former Soviet Union

Transcript of «Le Dor Va Dor» | Annual Report 2011



    Memorizing the past,Aspiring for the future!


    2 Le Dor Va Dor projectReport for 2011

    p. 3 thinking aloudp. 4 2011p. 5 project mapp. 6 about the projectp. 7 web-sitep. 8 project progressp. 9 5-year history in figuresp. 10 volunteersp. 11 our common deedp. 12 plans for 2012p. 13 you can make a changep. 14 our partnersp. 15 anti-Semitismp. 16 2012

  • In hallowed memory of Shmuil ben Itskhak Kraizman and Kalman ben Ruvim Sverdlov


    When my grandmother came back upset from a cemetery she told me that she wasnt able to find the grave of her aunt. I didnt believe it and went there myself. Well, neither me, nor the cemetery workers, who had old dusty books with entries about deaths in the alphabetical order, could find the grave. Even having found the appropriate information in that pile of paper, we were unable to apply it to the map of the cemetery and to find the grave.That was in spring 2007. A year later our Jewish Community already had the full database of all 7500 graves of 4 Jewish parts of the city with a photograph of each and information about its place on a cemetery. The database was created by our project, where me as well as tens of young people

    volunteered, honoring those, who had kept for us Jewish traditions and Jewishness as such during three generations of the Soviet power.Now the team of the project not only includes more than 50 people all over the world. During the 5 years of constant project activities we have collected more than 100000 graves on 37 cemeteries in 24 cities in 5 countries.We wouldnt have reached that without support of our partners and sponsors. Last year we doubled our databases and we plan to double them again in 2012 including Siberia, Kazakhstan and Odessa, Kiev and Kharkov in Ukraine into the map of our project. We hope that you will do what one can to reach these objectives.

    Moti Sverdlov, Executive Director of Le Dor Va Dor project.

    3Le Dor Va Dor project Report for 2011

  • 42011

    We started the project of collecting biographies Nobody is forgotten, nothing is forgotten, Three generations of Soviet Jewish who kept the traditions for us


    24 cities in the project 37 cemeteries catalogued

    5 countries in the project

    67 volunteers took part in the project

    More than 1450 people took part in cleaning Jewish cemeteries

    9 communities joined the project that year

    107921 graves in the database with a photograph of each one

    More than 79400 graves in the lists and databases of our partners

    More than 1500 gravestones were cleaned during the fall cataloguing season in Yekaterinburg, more than 18000 in Moscow

    Development of a system of interactive cartography of Jewish cemeteries was started

    Le Dor Va Dor projectReport for 2011

  • 5Le Dor Va Dor project Report for 2011


    We are especially careful and attentive to the issues of renovation and maintenance of Jewish cemeteries, e.g. clean-up and commemoration.

    Out of circa 520 Jewish cemeteries in the Former Soviet Union more than 40 are now within Le dor va dor project. To provide them with proper care and to catalogue the rest of them we need expenses, which exceed volunteer and financial resources of the project at the moment.

    We achieved such results only thanks to our partners and donors, who having realized the importance of the project, invested and keep investing in renovation and preservation of our heritage.

    All the works at the cemeteries are carried out under Halakhic laws and are subject to the Main Rabbinate of each country and to local rabbis .

    Jewish cemeteries completely in the database Partly catalogued Cities planned for cataloguing in 2012

    Jewish cemeteries completely in the database and available for search

    Arzamas | Tobolsk | Tyumen | Ufa | Kazan | Ulyanovsk | Tver | Vladimir | Mariupol | Poltava | Korosten | Yoshkar Ola | Solnechnaya | Pochep

    Partly catalogued and available for search

    Kishinev | Tiraspol | Kiev | Saltykovsk | Perlovskoe | Noginsk | Perm | Yekaterinburg | Chelyabinsk | Omsk | Malakhovka | Minsk | Kaluga | Dnepropetrovsk

    | Kharkov | Odessa | Samara | Saint-Peterburg

    Cities planned for cataloguing in 2012

    Tbilisi | Tshinval | Poti | Bendery | Alma-Ata | Karaganda | Shymkent | Novosibirsk | Krasnoyarsk | Khabarovsk | Vladivistok | Sankt-Peterburg | Bryansk | Voronezh | Penza | Ivanovo | Vitebsk | Gomel | Ryazan

    99% of what have been done for the last 5 years would be impossible without support of our partners and volunteers. How to join you can learn on pages 10 and 12


    According to the tradition a cemetery as a holy place can never be disturbed. Jewish cemeteries and places of mass grave brightly illustrate how Jewish communities were destroyed in the past, e. g. during the Holocaust (The Catastrophe of European Jewry during the Second World War). They are like alive witnesses of the history of Jewish community life all over the world and they are an important part of Jewish cultural heritage, showing its variety.At the same time thousands of Jewish graves today are not attended and guarded by anybody. They are in a poor condition and their destruction continues.Disregard, urbanization, vandalism, robberies and unqualified attempts of renovation threaten to eliminate

    for ever what is often the only existing source of knowledge about Jewish communities of the prewar period. Without immediate intervention many of them can completely disappear. Le Dor Va Dor is a project of cataloguing Jewish graves in Russia and the countries of the Former Soviet Union, which was created in 2007 by an initiative group of enthusiasts, who had returned from an expedition to Jewish places in the Crimea. The objective of forming a group were activities on renovation of Jewish cemeteries. Since then not only methodic and technology of cataloguing were developed, but also was created software for creation of catalogues and a website. The resource you are looking at now doesnt only let you find Jewish graves with minimum information. It also gives an opportunity to distantly

    Le Dor Va Dor projectReport for 2011

    order services of maintenance of gravestones of your relatives and friends.The foremost task of the project is renovation and protection of Jewish cemeteries and mass graves all over the territory of the Former Soviet Union. Now the website has information about more than 100000 graves on 37 cemeteries in 24 cities of Russia, which is 95% of information about graves in the mentioned regions. Only several parts are not covered about 2500 graves. If you havent found the grave of a relative, dont lose your hope we are working with the rest of them and this work will be soon completed.These cemeteries are a part of European-Jewish heritage and being often in a poor condition they need our attention and care.

  • 7Le Dor Va Dor project Report for 2011


    Today we suggest you taking a real part in the project development, by a feasible material donation. Its not an act of charity, its a suggestion for partnership, the invitation to cooperation. Its the way to contribute to the advancement of our common business and, accordingly, the way to strengthening the integrity of the Jewish communities of FSU. Only together we can

    preserve the heritage of our ancestors. For your convenience weve created accounts in the most popular payment systems.

    For making a deposit from Russia you can use any terminal in any branch of mobile-center Svyaznoy. The account number youre to make a transfer to is: 2 989218 904097 of Svyaznoy-bank .

    If you want to make a transfer from abroad , PayPal is there to help you. For this purpose go to www.beitkvarot.ru, choose an option to donate (on the right menu). Besides, you can always contact with us and we will find a way convenient for you.Donation is not the only way to take part in the project . Pass the information around or become a volunteer, and itll be your own feasible

    contribution.In case you have problems with the transfer, or you have some interesting offers, contact us via e-mail support@beitkvarot.ru or call 43 6768-3181550.

    ***We do one good work. Let G-d bless our efforts!We express our gratitude to all those people who helped and are helping the project, to all our partners!

    All these years the project Le

    Dor Va Dor was striving for being indispensable for

    our users. It is not easy; developing

    and improving such a large-scale

    project by the efforts of a mere handful

    of people is a utopia. This is why

    one of our essential goals is working

    in a close tandem with volunteers

    and portal users. Only by common

    efforts we can keep the project Le Dor Va Dor going and


  • 8 Le Dor Va Dor projectReport for 2011


    2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 Total:Russia 11036 24254 46911 86730 107921

    Moscow 2879 10395 22893 74054 74054Vostrjakovskoe 2879 9136 18893 67693 finished 67693Saltikovka - - - 151 in progr. 151Noginsk - - - 292 in progr. 292Malahovka - 1259 4000 5918 in progr. 5918Perlovskoe - - - - in project 0

    Nizhniy Novgorod 2530 5656 7495 7811Marijina Rowcha 1397 2836 3616 - - finished 3616Krasnaya Etna 899 2344 3288 - - finished 3288Olgino 234 476 581 - - finished 897Fedyakovo - - 10 - - finished 10Old Sormovskoe - - - - - in project 0

    Arzamas - - 244 - - finished 244Omsk - - - - 160 in progr. 160Tobolsk - - - - 60 fi