The Stefi Foundation

Having rescued 13 Jews from the Nazis, Stefania Podgórska and her sister Helena teach us that, one thought, one act, one person CAN change the world.

Who was Stefania Podgórska?

During World War II in Przemyśl, a city in Nazi-occupied Poland, 17-year old Stefania Podgórska (known to her friends as “Fusia” – say “foosha”), a Polish Catholic girl, along with her eight year-old sister Helena Podgórska, hid 13 Jews in an attic for nearly two years. All 13 survived, avoiding certain death at the hands of the Nazis.

Fusia and one of the rescued, Max Diamant (Józef Burzmiński), were married immediately after the war. Stefi said that Max had come only for one night and ended up staying 59 years.

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What is The Stefania Podgórska


We envision a world in which people are imbued with the belief that one thought, one person, one action CAN change the world.

The mission of The Stefania Podgórska Foundation (formerly The Stefi Foundation) is to inspire compassion, tolerance, and courage by teaching about Stefania and Helena Podgórska, two Catholic girls who rescued 13 Jews during the Holocaust in Nazi-occupied Poland.

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What do we do?

We focus on public speaking events about Stefania and her story and promoting existing tools, such as “Hidden In Silence”, a television movie made about Fusia in 1994 and a young-adult novel titled “The Light in Hidden Places”, scheduled for a multi-national release in March 2020. Expanding the tools and materials available for more in-depth education is an ongoing project.

Our planned projects involve including Fusia’s history in school curricula globally, developing curricula and teaching materials, as well as digitizing and archiving historical documents, articles, interviews, and videos of Fusia for educators and researchers.

Efforts to explore potential relationships with other organizations and exploring possibilities for guided tours to Przemyśl, Poland are ongoing.

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What we need?

Fulfillment of our mission to inspire compassion, tolerance, and courage by teaching about Stefania and Helena Podgórska requires financial resources. Therefore, financial contributions to our Foundation are greatly appreciated. We are interviewing for general board, advisory board and honorary board participants along with qualified people for specific educational and development projects.

Current events and activities.

A Brief Presentation

A Brief Presentation

Stefania Podgorska and Helena Podgorska's story This compilation from several presentations tells the story of how during Nazi-occupied Przemyśl, Poland, two Catholic girls rescued 13 Jewish people by hiding them in an attic for nearly two years. With remarkable...

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Yom Hashoah – Arizona Jewish Historical Society

Yom Hashoah – Arizona Jewish Historical Society

Ed Burzminski speaks about Stefi and Joe's story on May 3, 2019 for Yom Hashoah, Holocaust Remembrance for the Or Adam congregation and the Arizona Jewish Historical Society at the Cutler-Plotkin Jewish Historical Museum in Phoenix, AZ.  ...

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You can't fully teach about the Holocaust without also telling the story of rescuers like Stefania Podgorska and Helena Podgorska.


– Middle School Teacher in Phoenix, AZ

While researching Stefania Podgorska to prepare for my class, I realized that she is a role model... for me.


– Elementary School Teacher, Poland

A Special Thanks to Our Donors

Ed & Lori Burzminski
Founding Donors

Janet & David Petersen
Founding Donors

Gosia & Adam Weiss

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