Pianist Mona Golabek to introduce The Willesden Project at a Benefit Concert for Ukrainian Refugees at the POLIN Museum in Warsaw

Thu, 06/16/2022 - 6:07pm

USC Shoah Foundation is bringing The Willesden Project educational initiative to a group of 500 Ukrainian refugees and other guests in Warsaw, Poland this weekend. The event will also feature a musical performance by USC Shoah Foundation partner and celebrated pianist Mona Golabek.

At the Concert to Benefit Ukrainian Refugees, the audience will watch and reflect on Music Dreams, an animated short film based on the story of Mona’s mother, Lisa Jura, a young Holocaust survivor who in 1938 escaped from Vienna to London on the Kindertransport. Mona will then give a musical performance that brings her mother’s inspiring story to life.

The event, which is being organized in partnership with Warsaw’s Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw (POLIN), will also pay tribute to four organizations that are assisting those directly affected by the conflict in Ukraine.

"As the proud daughter of Jewish Holocaust refugees, I am grateful for the USC Shoah Foundation and the opportunity to go to Poland and perform for Ukrainian refugees,” Golabek said.  “Ultimately, we are all ‘refugees’ in our lifetime, if not, the descendants of those that fled from persecution. I salute Poland and its people for opening their hearts to so many in need.”

The Willesden Project is a partnership of USC Shoah Foundation, Hold On To Your Music and the Koret Foundation that is designed to further the mission of education through testimony and bring the power of music and story to young people globally to contribute to their development as empathetic, knowledgeable and resilient individuals.

The four organizations being honored at the event are EdCamp Ukraine, Tolerspace, the Polish Migration Forum and Ukrainian House.

EdCamp Ukraine and Tolerspace have been providing tailored educational resources to children in conflict-affected areas within Ukraine. The Polish Migration Forum has been offering psychological support to refugees, especially vulnerable groups, in Poland and Ukrainian House has been providing support to Ukrainians arriving in the country.

USC Shoah Foundation and partners in Ukraine have developed a wide range of teaching activities related to Ukraine that can be found here.

The concert at the POLIN museum will not be livestreamed, but excerpts will be made available in the weeks following the event.