“Our commitment must be to remember the victims who perished, respect the survivors still with us, and reaffirm humanity's common aspiration for mutual understanding and justice.”
-- Declaration of the Stockholm International Forum on the Holocaust
Institutions in Canada marked Holocaust Education Week 2012 with a number of events.
Montreal Holocaust Education Series
The Holocaust Education Series was presented by the Montreal Holocaust Memorial Centre from October 24 to November 4, 2012. For its 15th edition, the Holocaust Education Series will focus on the theme, The Righteous, with 14 events organized across Montreal. The Series will promote reflection on moral responsibility, human compassion and resistance and link the past and the present.
The Holocaust Education Series program can be found on the Holocaust Memorial Centre's website and includes:
Raoul Wallenberg and other Righteous among the Nations will be honoured:
At the opening event on October 24, the actions of Raoul Wallenberg, Righteous among the Nations, will be highlighted in the Canadian film production, Angel of Budapest. The film demonstrates how this Swedish diplomat sheltered and rescued thousands of Hungarian Jews during the Holocaust. Today, Raoul Wallenberg is recognized worldwide as a symbol of the ability of individuals to have a major impact on human rights. In 1985, he was posthumously acknowledged as the first Honorary Citizen of Canada. On October 25th, at 1:30 pm, Mayor Gérald Tremblay will honor this remarkable person, who saved the lives of many Hungarian Jews who now live in the city, by naming him an honorary citizen of Montreal. The ceremony will take place in the presence of Holocaust survivors saved by Raoul Wallenberg.
Other rescuers will be honored during the ten days devoted to the history of the Holocaust and the fight against genocide today. In ten locations across Montreal, The Montreal Holocaust Memorial Centre has organized 14 events in partnership with: The City of Montreal, The Jewish Public Library, The Azrieli Foundation, Casa d'Italia, Aleph - Center for Contemporary Jewish studies, le Centre communautaire de loisir de la Côte-des-Neiges and the Réseau francophone de recherche sur les opérations de paix.
Fourteen events open to all:
Angel of Budapest: Wednesday, October 24, at 7:00 pm, at l'Espace Réunion
The film relates the story of Raoul Wallenberg, the Swedish diplomat who saved thousands of Hungarian Jews during the Holocaust. The film will be followed by a bilingual discussion with the Honourable Irwin Cotler. (Film in English)
Raoul Wallenberg, Citoyen d'honneur de la ville de Montréal: Thursday, October 25 at 1:30 pm at City Hall. By invitation only.
Raoul Wallenberg will be named Honourary Citizen of Montreal, by Mayor Tremblay. The Honorable Irwin Cotler and other dignitaries will be present at the ceremony, as will survivors saved by Mr. Wallenberg.
Nicky's Family: Thursday, October 25 at 7:30 pm at the Gelber Conference Centre
Nicky's Family tells the story of Nicholas Winton, an Englishman who rescued 669 Czech and Slovak children before the outbreak of WWII. The movie is followed by a discussion with Jane Lytvak, a survivor saved by Nicholas Winton. (Film in English)
Partisans of Vilna: Saturday, October 27 at 7:30 pm at the Gelber Conference Centre
Recounting how a commando unit was formed under tremendous risk to conduct sabotage missions against the Nazis, the film explores the moral dilemmas facing Jewish youth who organized underground resistance in the Vilna ghetto. (Film in English)
Open House at the Museum: Sunday, October 28 to Sunday, November 4 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm at the Montreal Holocaust Memorial Museum
Free Admission with guided visits at 11:00 am in French and at 1:00 pm in English. Survivor testimonies at 10:30 am and 3:30 pm. Reservations not required.
Hidden Children: Monday, October 29 at 7:00 pm at Librairie Olivieri
Discussion animated by Émilie Dubreuil, Radio-Canada journalist, featuring Nathalie Zajde, ethnopsychiatrist, and Marguerite Quddus, herself a child hidden during the occupation in France.
Fifty Italians: The men who saved 50.000 Jewish lives: Tuesday, October 30 at 6:30 pm, Casa d'Italia
The story of fifty men who through their ingenious, courageous and at times comically creative actions saved the lives of over 50,000 Jews. The screening will be followed by a discussion. (Film in English)
Sauver un être, sauver un monde: Wednesday, October 31 at 7:00 pm, Centre Communautaire de Loisir de la Côte-des-Neiges
A play adapted from the novel by Catherine Shvets, Hitler et la fillette, underscores the small miraculous gestures that can save lives. Presented for the first time to the general public, it is followed by a discussion with the actors and a Holocaust survivor.
Reflecting on Intervention: Thursday November 1 at 7:00 pm, Café-resto L'inter-mission
The international community faces many obstacles when massive violations of human rights occur. Some mass atrocities have been avoided, others not. How do we make sense of this? Discussion with Béatrice Vaugrante, directrice générale d'Amnistie internationale pour le Canada francophone, and Jean-Baptiste Jeangène Vilmer, expert member of Réseau francophone de recherche sur les opérations de paix.
Musical Evening and Award Ceremony: Sunday, November 4 at 7:00 pm, Segal Centre
A musical evening with the Simons Popa Alexandrov Klezmer Trio. The Holocaust Memorial Centre will be presenting an award in recognition of an individual's exceptional role in Holocaust education.
Toronto's Holocaust Education Week
From 1-8 November 2012, thousands of people across the Greater Toronto Area and beyond participate in diverse educational, cultural, and community programs during the annual Holocaust Education Week (HEW). One of the largest Holocaust educational forums of its kind, Holocaust Education Week features leading international voices in Holocaust history, pedagogy and cultural awareness. HEW culminates in a commemoration of the anniversary of Kristallnacht.
The theme for HEW 2012 is Culture of Memory. Programs will explore how both public and personal memory of the Holocaust is shaped by psychological, historical, scholarly and cultural perspectives as well as the evolution of historic sites of Jewish life and death in Europe. A particular emphasis will be placed on artistic and literary representations of the Holocaust spanning across generations and nationalities. Reflecting upon the Culture of Memory provides an opportunity for public discourse on a variety of sub-themes: Interpreting Memory; Constructing Memory; Preserving Memory; and also Restoring Memory.