The board of the Świętokrzyskie governorate in south-central Poland has allocated $1.3 million of European Union funds for the restoration of a synagogue in the town of Chęciny and the building of a Jewish Culture Memorial Center.
The synagogue is on the regional register of protected monuments. It was constructed in 1638 and was renovated in 1906 following a fire the previous year.
The area was devastated during World War II and after the war, a library and a cinema were housed in the building. In 1958, it became a cultural center.
The cost of the entire project is said to be $1.424 million, 95 percent of which will be paid for by the governorate and the rest being funded by the local government.
“We would like to renovate the building, repair the roof, and renew the walls. We will also create the Jewish Culture Memorial Center there. There will be various exhibits. Jewish heritage is an important part of Chęciny’s culture. We want to remind visitors about it,” the town’s mayor, Robert Jaworski, told the Echo Dnia newspaper.
Local authorities in Chęciny worked with the Jewish Community in Katowice to advance the restoration of the synagogue. They applied for funding for the project in 2017.