Another year is about to come to an end-- a year that once again didn't see us in Poland. While it was heartbreaking to not conduct our annual cemetery restoration projects, we continued to pivot and find ways to stay engaged in the work and support our partners in Poland. We thought we'd share some of highlights from 2021 with you!
Education and Awareness
We spent a lot of our time and energy in sharing news and resources about a variety of topics. Through social media posts, blog content, and discussions, we conveyed facts and memories about the Shoah (or Holocaust), the importance of remembering, and educating followers about the great Jewish cemetery work that's being conducted around Europe. Check out some of these blog posts:
Books on the Holocaust
Movies and Documentaries on the Holocaust
The Importance of Holocaust Education
Map of TMF's Cemetery Restorations Projects
New TMF Video
One of our biggest projects for 2021 was the creation of a video that we premiered in late November. Entitled, Matzevah: A Stone Upon Which Lives are Written, viewers get an in-depth look at the heartbeat of The Matzevah Foundation.
TMF had the pleasure of joining in unique community events, both an international community and a few local communities!
In April, TMF President Steven Reece joined a virtual meeting of the Seaside Jewish Community in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. The group was highly engaged in his presentation of our work and the history of caring for Jewish cemeteries in Poland. It was a privilege to hear about some of the member's Polish Jewish roots.
In July, TMF was a sponsor of a worldwide virtual conference entitled Restoring Jewish Cemeteries in Poland 2021: The Task Ahead. The event was well attended by people all around the world who are either actively engaged in restoration work or have interest in getting started. You can view this exceptional conference on our website here.
In September, members of TMF's board who live in Nashville, TN participated in the annual Sukkot art exhibit at the Gordon Jewish Community Center. The JCC invited us to submit an art piece for their exhibit called, Hope and Renewal. Our piece utilized paint and photographs to show the transformation of a Jewish cemetery during a week of work. We were honored to be invited to this special Nashville community event!
The board of The Matzevah Foundation met both in person and on Zoom several times this year. A highlight was our annual getaway to the mountains, this year in Townsend, Tennessee. We gathered for four days of fellowship, planning, and dreaming for our 2022 work.
We unanimously voted to take a step in faith and make plans for a return to Poland in the summer 2022! We began to lay out possible locations and dates for cemetery work. We're spending the winter months fine tuning our projects and hope to announce those to everyone by early spring. We continue to monitor the state of the COVID-19 virus as well as health and travel precautions for Poland, the US, and countries where volunteers live.
TMF continues to be blessed by the financial giving of so many in 2021. We know that many friends and family are experiencing hard times caused by job loss, illness, and other challenges so we do not take these gifts lightly. Your giving has allowed us to support several of our partners in Poland who were able to carry out commemoration and restoration projects this year. It also helps us to know we have a good start on the financial resources we'll need to return to Poland ourselves next summer.
We can't do this without you! If you'd like to make a year end contribution, please visit our website for an easy and fast way to give.
Thank you to all of our friends, followers, and donors for helping us to have a great 2021! We can't wait to share with you soon all that we have planned for 2022.
Blessings to you and your families this holiday season and in the new year ahead!