The European Centre Memory, Education, Culture strategy for the coming years is based on three thematic areas:
– Past for future. Historical and civic education
– Europe and us
– Culture beyond divisions.
The activities carried out at the European Centre Memory, Education, Culture are designed to complement each other, so that they make up a coherent, multi-faceted whole. First of all, broad activities are undertaken to preserve the memory of Stalag VIIIA among the region’s communities, schoolchildren and tourists. There are many years of neglect to rectify here. The profile “Past for future” defines the Centre’s existence, builds its programmatic foundations. This is why all meetings, workshops, seminars, conferences, concerts, and literature meetings take into account the tragic historical character of this place and, by emphasizing the respectful approach it deserves, a strong basis for the multi-directional educational activities of the Centre is created. At the same time, projects showing the role and importance of culture, especially music, during periods of political dictatorships in various European countries are carried out. An important element of the Centre’s work is its educational effort. Workshops for schoolchildren, regional history lessons, meetings with witnesses of history are conducted to explore this filed of interest.
The Centre comes forward with activities intended to involve students and teachers of the region in research projects and creative processes consisting in gathering and disseminating knowledge and historical awareness, thus formulating a basis for the development of regional identity among the young.
The Centre’s staff also take care of the former Stalag’s good state of repair, performing maintenance work at the Soviet POW cemetery and the monument dedicated to the prisoners of Stalag VIIIA.
The Centre aims to work on the gradual freeing of the societies of both border towns, Zgorzelec and Görlitz, and the border region from prejudices, negative stereotypes and mental barriers.
The types of activities introduced by the European Centre Memory, Education, Culture, i.e. thematic projects, youth workshops, didactic seminars, cooperation with schools on both sides of the border, publications geared towards development of the regional and civic awareness, cultivation of historical memory and awareness of the role of culture in social processes, are multi-faceted in nature, while also serve the main goal, which is to create a European Memorial Park VIIIA at the former Stalag site.
At the basis of all these activities lays a desire to put an end to the divisions that emerged from the often dramatic and painful history shared by our nations, our countries, so that the regional communities can show mutual understanding and respect across both sides of the border.