ÚZŽNO – Central Association of Jewish Religious Communities in the Slovak Republic
There are about 15 million Jews in the world today. About as many as there were before 1939. So it took 70 years for “nature” to come to terms with the crimes of the Holocaust. There are currently about 2 million Jews living in Europe, and about 5,000 in Slovakia. Slovakia, once one of the important centers of Central European Judaism, has seen a 95 percent decline in the Jewish population in a single century.
Today, about 5,000 Jews make up practically one per mille of the Slovak population. Even today, many members of the community feel it is safer to not profess their Judaism in public. At first glance, it might seem that the Jews in our region have “become extinct.” But the reality is different.
Despite the difficult fate, tragedies and traumas they have suffered in this area over the last 75 years or so, they are still here. The present confirms that the community successfully overcame the difficult period and restarted Jewish life. In 1945, after the rest of the Jewish community returned from the concentration camps, it was necessary to deal with the organization of Jewish life and the administration of community property.
In September 1945, the Slovak National Council decided to establish the Central Union of Jewish Religious Communities in Slovakia, which since its inception to this day has been operating as the umbrella organization of Judaism.
The Central Union of Jewish Religious Communities in the Slovak Republic is a church that represents the Jewish community in Slovakia as a whole in religious, national, social, educational and cultural matters.
He acts on behalf of the community and acts towards other churches, nationalities, Slovak and foreign organizations, public and state administration and the public.
The goal of ÚZŽNO is:
· To create conditions for a full-fledged spiritual and national life for all generations of the community
· Provide social and health care for Holocaust survivors and other needy members of the community
· Protect the Jewish community against manifestations of anti-Semitism, xenophobia, fascism or other discrimination
· To protect the memory of the Jewish victims of the Holocaust.
· Care for Jewish monuments and Judaica (owned by the community)
· To support education in the field of Judaism, Jewish culture and history
· To support a positive image of Jewish culture, Judaism in public