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News and Events

News and Events


Summer school in Czech Republic and Slovakia is over

During eight days in different cities of Czech Republic and Slovakia a summer school (educational program) on Jewish studies was held. Participants – students, graduates, young scientists and researchers from the CIS and Baltic countries have learned a vast historical, cultural and spiritual heritage of the Jewish diaspora.

The school that ended on August 20th, was organized by the Sefer Center for University Teaching of Jewish Civilization, which is widely recognized as central umbrella organization for academic Jewish scholars, students, and programs in the countries of the former Soviet Union and beyond.

Chais Center for Jewish Studies in Russia (Hebrew University of Jerusalem) has contributed to the school as a co-organizing party.

More than 20 preselected people from Ekaterinburg, Moscow, Kiev, Kharkov, Riga, St. Petersburg, Tumen, Vilnius, whose scientific interests lie in Jewish Studies, took part in the school work, as well as 6 tutors and lecturers from Russia, Israel and Great Britain (Cambridge University).

David Rozenson, who’s been in charge of Avi Chai foundation Russian programs for 10 years, says that all Sefers projects are practically oriented and effective, and the same can be said about the Czech and Slovak Summer School. “Certainly, any good project can always be done better than it was done. My main task as an Avi Chai Program Director is to control that money and effort spent on our programs are spent well end effectively. It is the 6th year in a row that I personally come at Sefers schools for a day or two, and seeing only a small part of that schools I can state our sponsorship of Sefers projects is absolutely reasonable”.

Mr. Rozenson also expressed words of gratitude to Chais Center for Jewish Studies in Russia and personally to its Director Semyon Goldin, a longtime Sefers partner and one of school lecturers.

Within the schools program the participants studied the major sites connected with the history, culture, art, spiritual and social life of the Jewish diaspora, which for centuries had lived in the lands of Bohemia, Moravia and Slovakia, and participated actively in the political and social life in these territories.

Nowadays there are from 4 to 6 thousand Jewish inhabitants living in the Czech Republic, and les than 6 thousands in Slovakia. Thats substantively less than before the Second World War, when the vast majority of Jewish population had been eliminated by the Nazis, and many of survivals had left the country after the war was over.

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