© Richard Schofield

Together with the University of Latvia's Centre for Judaic Studies, the Jews in Latvia Museum in Riga and Paideia in Stockholm, in July 2019 the International Centre for Litvak Photography piloted the so-called 'Challenging the Past' travelling summer school. With the help of 16 young participants from Latvia and Lithuania, the five-day trip from Riga to Kaunas included a total of 24 events and activities, including meetings, discussions, walking tours, workshops with a wide variety of locals working in the field of Jewish heritage and memory, visits to sites of cultural and historical importance, learning about (and eating) Jewish food, and, during the Friday evening of the journey, meeting with members of Kaunas' secular Jewish community during their weekly Shabbat celebration. After a three-year break due to the Covid pandemic, in July 2022 we expanded and improved the programme, including the addition of an intensive online learning module before everyone hit the road. Now called the Baltic Jewish Heritage Study Programme, or BJHSP, the organisers are currently raising the necessary money to do it for a third time. A copy of the original 2019 project report can be downloaded and read here.