After a long period of preparations, construction finally began to renovate and expand the historic synagogue of Bryansk, South-West Russia.The Bryansk synagogue was built in 1905 by the city Jewish community, whose members each pitched in to have the building completed.
In 1929 the community was banned from the building that came under the authority of the Communist regime.
Only in 2010 was the synagogue returned back to the community by the city administration and its status re-instated. But the building was extremely run down with a need for massive renovations. “The dream is to have the synagogue become a center of community life – to be not just a place for prayer but also a place that will address all the other needs of the community,’ said chief Rabbi of Bryansk Menachem Zaklas. “That includes a club for children & youth activities, a charity center, guest accommodations and a school and kindergarten,” he said.
“For more than 80 years Jews of Bryansk were prohibited from praying in the synagogue. And today our dream to come back to it and turn it into a real home for the community is finally possible. “
Currently the Bryansk Jewish community is running a fundraiser to help raise the funds necessary for the completion of the first round of the reconstructions: renovating the building and strengthening its core.