During the Holocaust, called the Shoah in Hebrew, the Nazis murdered six million Jews, among them were one million children. The Jewish population in Eastern Europe was decimated and those who survived left their home countries and settled throughout North and South America, Israel, Western Europe and other far reaching countries. Their stories of survival are as varied as they are. Most have now passed on leaving behind children and grandchildren who must continue to bear witness to the horrors of the Shoah.
The Peretz Project is named for Paul Dab, Peretz in Yiddush, father-in-law of the project’s creator, Barbara Dab. Paul survived life in Polish ghettos, concentration camps, escape and recapture and death marches before being liberated. He survived along with his father, Aron, and one other brother, Yaacov, but the rest of his family perished. The three were reunited after the war.
Paul Dab and his father emigrated to the U.S., settling in San Francisco, California, where he married, ran a business and raised two sons. Yaacov emigrated to Sao Paulo, Brazil. Tragically Paul died in 1978 at the young age of 52. Damage to his heart during an untreated illness in the camps is believed to be the cause of his early death. His sons are now in their middle years, having outlived their father. They are married, professionals and have five children between them, all college graduates and some with advanced degrees.
Throughout the years, both of Paul’s sons have expressed feelings of being different and having some of their own trauma related to the their father’s experiences during the Holocaust. The Peretz Project was created to give a voice to those children of survivors who wish to share their own stories and to demonstrate that the effects of the abuse and torture will not go silently into history. Recent studies even suggest genetic changes in survivors that may have been passed to their children. For more on the study conducted at New York’s Mount Sinai Medical Center, click here http://www.theguardian.com/science/2015/aug/21/study-of-holocaust-survivors-finds-trauma-passed-on-to-childrens-genes?CMP=share_btn_link.
If you or someone you know is a child of a survivor of the Shoah, and wishes to participate in The Peretz Project, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
About the Creator of The Peretz Project:
Barbara Dab is a journalist, news reporter and award winning PR consultant. Most recently she hosted a public affairs program on NASH FM 103.3 and WGFX 104.5 The Zone in Nashville. As host she interviewed newsmakers and people engaged in issues, business and nonprofit work in the Middle Tennessee region and around the country.
Prior to her time in Nashville, she was a reporter and News Director for public radio station KPFK 90.7 FM in Los Angeles. Her beat was education, social justice, labor and politics. In addition to reporting she anchored the nightly newscast and covered major events, including the 2000 Democratic National Convention. In Los Angeles she also worked extensively in nonprofit communications for the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor AFL-CIO, and The Alliance for Children’s Rights.
Currently Barbara resides in Nashville, Tennessee where she works as a PR consultant on various civic projects with the award-winning firm Communications Strategies. She has spent her life being active in the Jewish community and currently is President of the Board of Trustees at West End Synagogue in Nashville. She holds a BA Degree in Theatre from UC San Diego and an MA Degree in Broadcast Journalism from the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication. She and her husband have three grown children who are now scattered around the country.
Barbara was inspired to create The Peretz Project by her husband John, the son of Holocaust survivor Paul Dab. She is passionate about telling the stories of people like her husband so that future generations will never forget what can happen when the forces of evil are ignored by the world.
The Mishnah, the commentary on the Jewish Torah, teaches that man was created as an individual, with the potential for an entire world. “Anyone who destroys a single life is as though he has destroyed an entire world, and anyone who preserves a single life is as though he has preserved an entire world.” Six million Jewish worlds were destroyed in the Shoah. What remains now is the next generation left to rebuild their worlds and the worlds to come.