This is me. That’s what I look like now. I had this photo taken for my foreign passport. I wanted to visit my son in Latvia. This photo was taken in Slutsk in 2005.
I love my Belarus and I love my Slutsk. I appreciate it that our government cares about us. Life in Belarus is improving with every coming year.
Whatever they say about our country, we are happy with our life here. Perhaps, somebody may not like things, but I’m personally very happy with the government.
My wife and I are well provided for. I receive the equivalent of $190, my wife has about $120, and utilities and food products are inexpensive. We can manage all right.
In 1995 the Jewish community opened in Slutsk. I had retired by then and started to work actively in the community. I am assistant of the chairman of our community.
There are older people of over 60 in the community. There are some over 80. Young people take a little part in the life of our community, unfortunately.
Nowadays people are no longer afraid of acknowledging their Jewish identity. Vice versa, it is advantageous to be Jewish nowadays, considering the community assistance.
Nowadays people that have identified themselves as Russian or Belarusian come to our community as Jews, but we don’t send these people away. The Jewish people have survived in the world due to this support that they’ve provided for each other.
We need our community. At least, it has united the Jews in Slutsk. We used to be disunited. We didn’t know each other and didn’t socialize, but now we are like a family.
We get together three times a week. We celebrate Sabbath on Saturday. People get together to share opinions, joys and problems.
We try to do everything we can to make people remember about the innocent victims of the Holocaust. We installed a monument to the victims of the Holocaust in Slutsk.
There are three monuments on shooting sites in Slutsk. It’s nice when people understand that the memory needs to be kept, that it isn’t just a piece of marble, but a tribute of honor to the deceased that gave us an example that even in the most horrific conditions a person can preserve pride and dignity.