Emergency Stabilization of the Siena Synagogue, Siena, Italy
Help us reopen the prayer hall of the Siena Synagogue damaged in the recent earthquake.
On February 8th, 2023 an earthquake struck the city of Siena, causing structural damage to the walls that support the vault of the prestigious eighteenth-century Synagogue. The prayer hall was closed to the public for security reasons and a small area in the women’s gallery was set up as a temporary prayer space.
To secure and reopen the Synagogue, stabilization and restoration work is estimated to cost a total of 320,000 euros. In the first phase of the project (estimated to cost 120.000 euro) the damaged vault urgently needs to be stabilized, followed by the second phase (estimated to cost 200.00 euro), which involves the replacement of the existing roof to eliminate the dangerous pushing effect on the perimeter walls. The project also includes restoration of the magnificent neoclassical decorations on vault that date back to 1786.
The restoration project and structural project are coordinated by Opera del Tempio Ebraico di Firenze.
Significant contributions have been allocated to completion of the first phase of the project thanks to the David Berg Foundation through World Monuments Fund, the Società Israelitica della Misericordia di Siena and the Fondazione Beni Culturali in Italia. However, to reopen the building in its entirety, and to make the building antisismic to prevent damage from future earthquakes, both phases of the project must be completed. Without replacing the roof, we will not be able to remove the sustaining scaffolding, which will have to be kept inside the synagogue until completion of the second phase. We need to raise more than 200,000 euro for the second phase of the project, both through contributions from foundations, as well as through private donations from all over the world”.
To launch fundraising efforts for the second phase, thanks to our local sponsor Cantina Terra di Seta and Opera Laboratori, the first 30 donors (for donations above 1500 euro) will receive a special voucher to visit Jewish Siena:
– A complimentary tour and wine tasting of the Terra di Seta winery
– A guided tour of the Siena Synagogue with a historian of the Jewish Community
The voucher represents a token of appreciation to thanks donors who decide to support this important campaign to preserve one of the jewels of Italian Jewish heritage.
Just a few feet away from Piazza del Campo, the Synagogue has always been the heart of Jewish life in Siena. This is where the Jewish Community reunites to celebrate the Jewish holidays, welcoming visitors from all over the world who pass through Siena. The Synagogue, with its small museum, also offers a wide range of educational activities aimed at promoting Siena’s Jewish heritage as an integral part of the city’s history.
In addition to serving the religious needs of the Jewish population of Siena, both residents and visitors, the synagogue’s museum also offers educational activities aimed at promoting Siena’s Jewish heritage as an integral part of the city’s history.
Help us restore the synagogue to guarantee a future to the Jewish Community and to preserve one of the most important Jewish heritage sites in Italy.
Since the start of the fundraising campaign launched on Sunday September 10th, we have received many donations from private donors from Siena, Florence, Empoli, Massa Carrara, Rome, Palermo, Ravenna, Vienna, New York, and Washington.
We sincerely thank everyone who donated and who continues to donate to reopen and restore the Synagogue of Siena and for the many kind messages of support we have received in recent days.
Last week we received numerous antisemitic commments on a post regarding our fundraising campaign to restore the Synagogue of Siena. We can only hope that sooner or later these prejudices will disappear for good.
We are not giving up and we are pleased to share with you some of the many messages of closeness and support we have received in recent hours:
“Culture and history must always be supported.”
Thank you for sharing our campaign and donating to reach our goal. Please also send us your words of encouragement to post on our web page.
-Fundraising Group of the Jewish Community of Florence