Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Eric Pickles MP visited Warsaw Zoo, where over 300 Jews were saved during the Holocaust
On Monday, January 26, Pickles visited the Zoo where Jews were saved from the Warsaw Ghetto and deportation to concentration camps, by a Warsaw zoologist and his wife who hid them in animal cages and in their home.
- In 2014, Jewish News sent a reporter to Poland to investigate From The Depths. READ MORE HERE
After the war, the state of Israel thanked the couple by awarding them Righteous Among the Nations medals.
“It is an honor to see this great example of Polish defiance of the Nazis. Through the bravery of the ZOO director a new generation of hope was born” said Eric Pickles, who visited the Villa of the war-time Director Jan Zabinski and his family, which is in the final stages of refurbishment to become a museum.
The Museum is being opened in partnership with From The Depths, which runs a restoration project, returning Jewish tombstones that were used in the rebuilding of the zoo. From the Depths has also engaged in educational projects across Poland, and eastern Europe, regarding lost Jewish heritage, and restoring the dignity of those lost in the Shoah.
“We are so honored to have the opportunity to show this important site to The Secretary of State, it is crucial that whilst millions come every year to visit the concentration camps, they too should visit sites of heroism, sites that encourage our faith in humanity. Especially with the terrific rise in anti-Semitism we are seeing all over Europe, we must too understand that good people can stand up and make a difference”, said Jonny Daniels Founder and Executive Director From the Depths.
After his visit to the Villa the Secretary of State the Rt, Hon. Eric Pickles MP, saw the ,Matzevas’ (Jewish tombstones), that were stolen from the Jewish cemetery after the war and used as building materiál to rebuild the Zoo.
Volunteers from the ,Matzeva Project’ organized by From The Depths, are working to document the tombstones and return them to the local Jewish cemetery.