The INNA and MICHAEL Rogatchi Foundation has several aims, focusing on education, preserving cultural, historical and spiritual heritage, and providing help and support to cancer patients, the elderly and children in need. It also promotes the arts both in Finland and internationally.
The Foundation was established in 2004 by the writer Inna Rogatchi and her husband artist Michael Rogatchi. Both of them have been involved in international charity activities from the end of the 1980s onward.
The Rogatchi family have been founders of the internationally acclaimed Arts Against Cancer (AAC) culture charity whose Honorary Chairman was Mstslav Rostropovich. Members and supporters of AAC have included Maurice Bejart, Vladimir Spivakov, Sir Paul and Linda McCartney, the Queen of Denmark, Barbara Bush and many other distinguished figures.
The Rogatchi Foundation continues the traditions of Arts Against Cancer by introducing a fresh approach to the ever needed charity work combining it with high-class art, aiming to create as a result both human and cultural phenomenon that would be able to help and support those in need, as well as to bring to life and society in different countries new cultural and moral stimuli.
The Rogatchi Foundation is devoted to the developing and conducting of different charity initiatives and projects in the field of culture, education, traditions, moral values, and spiritual heritage. One of the ways to conduct this work it is to provide concrete charity action in every place where Foundation projects are carried on. Providing concrete acts of charity is one of the fundamental principles for the Foundation’s approach to its activities.
Among the recent projects supported by The Rogatchi Foundation are:
- Beginning school year 2010/2011, a new stipendium had been awarded to two graduates of the Dnepropetrovsk pension houses for boys and girls run by the local Jewish community. The Yenike Stipendium program lasted for 3 years.
- In the spring of 2011, The Rogatchi Foundation carried on a special HELP THE ORHANS charity project together with the world famous Italian Baglioni Hotels Group (www.baglionihotels.com). The philanthropic project was conducted in conjunction with the inaugural exhibition of a new art collection by Michael Rogatchi, ROGATCHI’s BLUES ( May 2011 – February 2012).
- Proceeds from a special dedication to the charity of the sale of the stunning Woman in the Red Hat (Spring Awakening) painting went to OrphanAid and The Anna Bujanover Stipendium projects in a joint charity effort by The Baglioni Hotels Group and The Rogatchi Foundation.
- In the spring 2011 The Rogatchi Foundation had launched a special campaign in support of Yenike Orphans Stipendium project – in the effort to make the project more long-lasting, thus helping more orphaned children from the founders’ native city and their Jewish community to navigate their adult life via proper education.
- The Rogatchi Foundation has an ongoing fruitful co-operation with the Dnepropetrovsk Jewish Community, and is contributing into the development of the community regularly. Such cooperation includes contributions for the house for elderly Beit Baruch, contributions to the pensions for boys and girls, contribution to the new synagogue in Dneprodzerzhinsk, etc. Dnepropetrovsk and its Jewish community are close to the hearts of the founders and runners of The Rogatchi Foundation as this is the native city for families of both Inna & Michael Rogatchi.
- Helping to fund the Cultural Heritage Center in Auschwitz, Poland. This is a relatively young organisation that educates people, especially the new generations, on the Holocaust and promoting the proper understanding of that and its’ implications. What is characteristic of that very good-hearted and hard-working Centre is that it is run by non-Jewish people, volunteers from Poland, US, Germany and other countries.
- Contributing to the educational Judaica Centre of Krakow – for the program which concerns itself with a very special type of people known in Poland as the “forgotten Jewish children”. During World War II, many Polish Jewish parents tried to save their children by any means, quite often asking their Polish Catholic neigbours to take them – sometimes for money, sometimes out of mercy. As parents perished, Polish parents did not dare tell the children the truth – until their own time came to be on the death-bed. This resulted in thousands of Polish people having no idea of who they were until they had become something from 50 to 60 years old themselves. Those people just started to realise who they really are, what has happened, and often are trapped between two worlds neither of which they belong to anymore. To accommodate them in this new – and dramatic – life, it is very uneasy, but a very necessary thing to do.
- Contributing to the Warsaw Museum of Jewish History, one of the very best in Europe, to help them to go on with many of their outstanding projects – one of which had been the making of a permanent exhibition of the most talented Jewish artists who had been the pride of Polish culture in general, and who, each of them, did work not on religious matters, or specific Jewish themes and subjects, but who all perished by being exterminated by Nazis. This is one of the most appealing cultural projects one can imagine, due to the transpiring of those talented works diversity and richness that all have been cut off so abruptly, and in such horrific way.
- Contributing to the Estonian National Library – to support their outstanding, very multi-faceted and thorough work on the preservation of the cultural and historical traditions of Estonian culture, and to promote futher ongoing Finnish – Estonian culture & educational cooperation.
- Consultation, financial help, support and promotion of a new concept and educational project in Finland – which is a small size private school designed to help children who because of one or other reason are having difficulties getting a conventional school education. It is a very warm, very attentive, and highly qualified “family”-like small school concept where the school is fully licensed to educate children properly and whose certificates are equal to other national schools. The project is on its trying period at the moment, with the idea of running as a national-wide project in Finland.
- Support to the Oncology Centre for Children in Lithuania, Vilnius.
- Launching the charity campaign for helping the Israeli children – victims of terror, those orphans, wounded, sick, lonely, the members of the families who have been hit by terrorist attacks against Israel.
- Constant help to the Finnish Cancer Society, and to the South-Western Cancer Society of Finland, one of the best in Europe, with numerous events and campaigns. One of them was raising funds for the unique ecumenic Chapel of Arts project in Turku, which has been the subject of wide news coverage due to its unique and widely appealing concept.
- Supporting the treatment for cancer of a 6-year old boy (the details are private) in Rome, Italy. The idea that we have been pursuing for over 20 years of active charity that we are doing via Arts Against Cancer previously and via The Foundation currently is the concrete character of it – not to pour money into something vague or uncontrollable, but to do something concrete and useful, something that is really needed, and needed now.
- Running several projects in the Ukraine – helping the first and only existing decent Western style house for elderly people in Dnepropetrovsk to get yet better equipment and a library. We did help to enlarge their library, and to enlarge their medical & physical activities centre, and are going to meet the other needs of that fantastic place where people do care about those who find themselves in appalling conditions.
- Establishing a special creative contest for the best teachers in Dnepropetrovsk, the annual The Anna Bujanover Award For Teacher Creativity & Excellence event, with the ‘proper a year’ contest going to the final stage. The idea is to create a stimulus (and to help extremely underpaid teachers living in real hardship in the Ukraine) for more creativity, and talents that are needed to evoke a real interest in knowledge among students. This is 10-year-run project, with specially created Prizes designed by Michael Rogatchi and made by hand by the best Finnish jewellers.
- Helping a special program for nurses treating leukaemia patients for the Leukaemia Association in London, United Kingdom. The nurses program is run by the Hematology Department, of the University College Hospital, headed by Professor David Lynch, a renowned authority in the field.
The Foundation has more projects to run both in the near future and as a prospect. The projects, additional to those described above, include new publications, books, and documentaries.
One of the central projects of the Foundation, which has been ongoing since 2004 is the Dream, Memory, Love world-tour of the exhibition that contains more than 60 art works by Michael Rogatchi.