I came across this initiative awhile ago, though I can’t remember where: “LatvieÅ¡i PasaulÄ“ – Muzejs un PÄ“tniecÄ«bas Centrs” (Latvians Abroad – Museum and Research Centre in English, LaPa-MPC for short).
Their goal is to create a museum in Latvia about the Latvian diaspora – Latvians who have left Latvia and settled elsewhere in the world, why they went, and what their lives were/are like. This would be complemented by a research centre focused on Latvian emigration. There are numerous museums dedicated to emigrants across northern Europe – I’ve been to two in Germany, Deutsches Auswandererhaus in Bremerhaven and BallinStadt in Hamburg – so it is about time there was one in Latvia as well!
The museum hasn’t been built yet, since they’re still working on finding a good location and raising funds. They have, however, organized some traveling exhibitions. I’m hoping to get involved with them on the emigration research and genealogy side of things. Though who knows, since I’m currently studying Applied Museum Studies – which encompasses a lot of fields including artifact preservation, display construction, collections management, exhibit design and educational programming – I might try to get involved with other facets of the museum too.
I would encourage all of you to take a look, and if you can support them in any way, whether through donation of artifacts/stories, monetary donations, membership or just getting the word out, please do!