Lviv is another place on the world map, where the Institute of National Remembrance wants to popularize the history of Poland. Children, teenagers and adults will meet here to talk about history, listen to lectures, take part in workshops, and watch exhibitions and films. The Institute of National Remembrance has already opened similar stops in Vilnius, Lutsk, Brussels, New York, Grodno, Chicago and Gnojnik in Zaolzie in the Czech Republic. The Lviv History Stop Partner is the Association of Polish Entrepreneurs of the Lviv Region.
The opening of the History Stop in Lviv was made jointly by the President of the Institute of National Remembrance Dr Jarosław Szarek and Polish Consul General Rafał Wolski, who expressed his gratitude to both the Association of Polish Entrepreneurs of the Lviv Region and the Institute of National Remembrance for supporting such a significant educational initiative.
Ewa Leniart, the governor of the Podkarpacie region, who was present at the ceremony, emphasized that the idea of History Stops, created by the late Janusz Kurtyka, has been beautifully continued, and even gained a new dimension, i.e. permanent places abroad. Both education and popularization of history are of great importance in the Lviv region, “ said Leniart. “I am glad that the bus has stopped in Lviv, because truth is important both for Poland and Ukraine. Without historical truth, it is impossible to create the future. Truth is vital for the future of both nations.
The President of the IPN, Dr Jarosław Szarek, thanking the hosts for the invitation, stressed that Lviv is a city full of history. “The essence of Lviv is the meeting of the East with the West. Lviv is a city of hospitality. In this melting pot the greatness of the Republic of Poland was formed,” he added.
Characterizing the activities of the Institute, Jarosław Szarek reminded that the IPN is the largest institution in post-Soviet countries that conducts this type of activity. It stores over 90 km of files produced by the former communist Polish People’s Republic security apparatus.” These are the files of people who said "no" to the Soviet system, but also the acts of human smallness. These files contain the often dramatic fate of people.”
“We meet in Lviv,” he continued, “in independent Ukraine. Great is the merit of the Poles that the communist system fell. The IPN has been attacked many times, but we have always been faithful to the truth. (...) It taught us uncompromisingness and the importance of serving the truth. On this Lviv land Polishness has been shaped and the IPN will never forget it. It is essential that Polishness lasts so that the knowledge of what Polishness is passed on to future generations.”
Referring to the theme of the 100th anniversary of regaining independence by Poland, the President stressed the great contribution of Lviv to this independence. “First conspiracies, priests, scouts and soldiers. In the famous Lviv rotunda, the Battle of Racławice Panorama was shown, and one of the most beautiful cemeteries shows what the price for freedom was like,” he reminded. “We can tell the world that you can be a modern nation, but you must remember and cultivate the past”.
The Director of the IPN Branch in Rzeszów, Dr. Dariusz Iwaneczko, discussed the activities of the National Education Office of the Institute of National Remembrance and presented its educational offer addressed not only to Poles in Lviv, but also to Ukrainians. Winter holidays with the Institute of National Remembrance, summer holidays with the Institute of National Remembrance, exhibitions, lessons, lectures and workshops for young people, as well as teachers training, film reviews, rallies and field activities and memory maps are planned.
Tatiana Bojko, president of the Association of Polish Entrepreneurs of the Lviv Region, stressed the need for "global education" offered by the History Stop. “At any age you can learn and get to know your history, “she said. She also announced that the classes are planned throughout the Lviv area, including Stryj, Żurawno and Sambor.