Homecoming: Soviet Jewish Child Survivors of the Holocaust, at Liberation and Today

Presented by Svetlana Shklarov, MD, RSW, PhD,  Calgary, Canada

According to the Claims Conference, there remain over 114,000 Jewish survivors of the Holocaust in the Former Soviet Union (FSU)(Tighe, Saxe, & Chertok, 2008). At least one third of these survivors were children during the war. Since liberation, they have been isolated from their brothers and sisters who survived in Europe alongside them, but then emigrated and settled in Western countries. How have the Soviet children lived their lives after the war? How did they cope with their losses and memories, and what stories are they telling today?

Through my research and work with Jewish Family Service Calgary, I have met many child survivors. I am also a daughter of a child survivor. For this conference, was asked to tell about Soviet child survivors at liberation and today and about their organized groups in the FSU – the sister organizations of the WFJCSH. Two members of the Moscow organization provided me with some information: Semyon Dodik and Victor Geht. Both are writers, educators, and speakers. They could not come to this conference, but gave me their permission to tell you their stories and read from their memoirs and articles.

To read the entire paper, click here: Former Soviet Union – The Homecoming

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