When Irena Sendler was 7, her father, a doctor, died of typhus. Even though she hadn’t known him long, he had taught her to help people in need.
Irena was born in Warsaw Poland on February 15, 1910. She went on to study nursing and worked at the Warsaw Department of Social Welfare.
During the Holocaust, Irena thought of the Jewish people as victims and did what she could to help.
She joined the ŻEGOTA, or Council to Aid Jews and worked to help children avoid a certain death at the Warsaw ghetto.
Instead of going to the ghettos, Irena helped place the children with foster families or in orphanages.
Some mothers refused to let their children go.
Irena was able to help save some of the children by putting them inside ambulances that had seriously ill patients inside.
Sometimes, she would hide the children in coffins, bags, and sacks to get them out.
Irena kept records of the children she saved. Those records were kept in a jar that was hidden in her neighbor’s garden.
In all, it is estimated that Irena helped to save over 2,500 children.
The Nazis eventually caught Irena and she was tortured and condemned to death.
She wasn’t willing to tell the Nazis where all the children were hiding.
After a soldier had accepted her bribe, Irena managed to escape prison and went on to help more people.
At the end of the war, Irena married and raised her own children. Irena believed that all people deserve help regardless of their nationality or religion.
Share away, people.