How does one bring Judaism back to a community that had been denied so much and for so long? How does one encourage a new generation of young Polish Jews, intent on joining the job market in the European Union, to remain in their native country, develop cultural ties to their roots and religion, and take on the mantle of Jewish communal leadership? In response to these questions, the Taube Foundation for Jewish Life & Culture created the Jewish Heritage Initiative in Poland.
Since 2003, the Jewish Heritage Initiative in Poland (JHIP) has become a major force in the revitalization of Jewish life and culture in Poland. JHIP supports more than seventy programs that meet the dual needs of strengthening Jewish communities in Poland and linking American Jews to their East European heritage. It sponsors and funds programs in academia and publishing, genealogy, heritage tourism, the arts and media, and Jewish literacy and leadership training for young adults.
JHIP achieves these goals with the help of its on-the-ground office in Warsaw, the Taube Center for the Renewal of Jewish Life in Poland. The Taube Foundation for Jewish Life & Culture is the only American Jewish foundation with an office and ongoing presence in Poland. Helise Lieberman, former director of the Lauder Morasha Jewish Day School, is the Director of the Taube Center for the Renewal of Jewish Life in Poland. She and Program Manager Magdalena Matuszewska, a Hebrew Studies doctoral student, coordinate activities with Taube Foundation for Jewish Life & Culture Executive Director Shana Penn, author and Scholar-in-Residence at the Graduate Theological Union’s Center for Jewish Studies in Berkeley, California.
THE JHIP MISSION IS TO:
Support the ongoing revival of Jewish culture in Poland
Further awareness of this resurgence among Jews and non-Jews
Foster positive interest in Polish Jews and Poland among American Jews, most of whom have Polish roots