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#MyPropertyStory Film Series: Survivors Returning Home After the Holocaust

WJRO is proud to introduce the first in a series of film screenings and discussions that will continue the global conversations sparked during the social media #MyPropertyStory campaign. The series aims to continue to elevate the personal stories of Holocaust survivors and their families.

The film screening and discussion will focus on the astonishingly haunting, award-winning film 1945, directed and co-written by Ferenc Török, which examines the deep undercurrents that run beneath the surface in a quaint village that is ultimately forced to face up to its “ill-gotten gains” after the Holocaust.

Live virtual panel discussion March 18
12 pm EDT | 5 pm (CET) | 6 pm (Israel)

1945 will be available to stream free
March 1-18

Register here


The virtual panel discussion will focus on how an Eastern European town dealt with the aftermath of the Holocaust and its sense of responsibility to survivors. Hosted by Gideon Taylor, Chair of Operations, WJRO, and featuring Ferenc Török, director and co-writer of the film 1945, Dr. Joanna Sliwa, Historian, Claims Conference, and Professor Menachem Steiner, second generation survivor whose family returned to their small town after the Shoah.

Gideon Taylor has served in a volunteer lay capacity as Chair of Operations for the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) since 2013.  In June 2020, Taylor was elected President of the Board of Directors of the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (Claims Conference). He also serves in a voluntary lay capacity as Co-Chair of the Board of the Foundation for the Preservation of Jewish Heritage in Poland, and as a Member of the Board of Directors of a number of organizations including Friends of Jewish Heritage in Poland.

Ferenc Török is a Hungarian film director. He has received the Béla Balázs Award, a state recognition for outstanding achievement in filmmaking. Török is a member of the European Film Academy. His award-winning film, 1945 (2017) has won important prizes, included the Yad Vashem Award at Jerusalem IFF. He is known for his films, Moszkva tér (2001), Szezon (2004), Overnight, (2007), Isztambul (2011) and Senki Szigete (2014).

Dr. Joanna Sliwa is Historian at the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (Claims Conference). She is a historian and educator with a focus on the Holocaust and Polish Jewish history. Joanna’s forthcoming book, Jewish Childhood in Kraków: A Microhistory of the Holocaust (Rutgers University Press) has received the 2020 Ernst Fraenkel Prize from the Wiener Holocaust Library.

Menachem Steiner (PhD, MRSME, Fellow SEFI) was born on January 1,1947 in Crasna (Romania) to Holocaust survivors Shimon and Rachel. in 1964, when he was 17, he emigrated with his parents and sister to Melbourne, Australia. After completing his last year of high school in Yeshivah College, he entered Monash University, where he received his Doctor of Philosophy in Applied Mathematics in 1973. He joined the academic staff of Monash and Swinburne Universities and served as Chairman of the Engineering Mathematics Group of Australia from 1992-1996. In 1998, he was bestowed with the Inaugural Award of the Institution of Engineers (IEAust) for his outstanding contribution to Engineering Mathematics in Australia. Together with his wife Dina,he made Aliyah to Israel in 2002, joined the academic staff of the Jerusalem College of Technology where he served as Rector during 2003-2014. He is currently retired and alongside his Torah studies and scientific research, he serves voluntarily for various organizations.