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NOA Compass features Guardians of Memory


The Alsace region in France enjoys a long and deep Jewish history. Since the Middle Ages, Jews have lived throughout the region, including in villages dotted across the countryside. But ever since the Holocaust, most of the region’s remaining Jews have moved into the cities, leaving the village cemeteries unattended – and often vandalized.

Today, both Jewish and non-Jewish volunteers are being mobilized by the Guardians of the Memory association to patrol Alsace’s 67 threatened rural Jewish cemeteries. This network brings together people of different religious denominations or ordinary citizens who were horrified by the desecration of the Jewish cemeteries. To date, more than 60 people – retired teachers, farmers, stay-at-home parents, and students – voluntarily watch over the Alsatian Jewish cemeteries.

An incredible initiative of people working to guard against antisemitism in Europe. You can also register an initiative to be included in the NOA Compass, the first online map of European initiatives combating antisemitism.

Photo: Pastor Axel Imhof, one of the volunteer guardians, in the cemetery of Lauterbourg (c) Alexandre Schlub