I don’t have a sense that I’m on a mission, I’m not a playing a superhero. But I have always been one to rebel. And I do have a “calling”. I once (completely spontaneously) wrote an essay what Auschwitz means to me today. I wrote about the need to rebel against human suffering and injustice. The piece won a competition and I thus was given an opportunity to meet new people who were not only sharing what memory of Jews means to them today, but also became involved in various initiatives. At that point, I was ready to act as well. Others showed me the possible options: whom to contact, who could become a potential ally. I was told to start from my own back-yard. That’s how “Zbąszyń Balagan” was born – a group consisting of students who participated with me in the nationwide project called “School of Dialogue”.
Our group efforts were recognized, we were awarded the second prize for a project commemorating Polish Jews. Sometimes I am driven to do all this because I am terrified by all the hate; projects, workshops, hours spent over one testimony, one poem, film, memory – I teach young people through conversations to listen to eyewitnesses but first and foremost – to listen to each other. Conversations with young people are always small successes, even if my interlocutors disagree with me (recently they disagree with me more and more often; I see how much work I have to do, as others are sowing the seeds of fear and disgust towards anyone who is different, and Other, a category that condemns people in absentia to social banishment from which there is no return).