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Our Hearts do not Want Holocaust, They Want Tolerance

Ghiorghita Fercea, Resita

 

This project was developed by Ghiorghita Fercea in Resita. Through a series of formal and non-formal activities, students learned about the Holocaust and learned to appreciate and contribute to maintaining democracy and its principles: pluralism, respect for human rights, peace, tolerance, and accepting differences.

 

On January 27, we organized a roundtable called No to Holocaust, Yes to Tolerance with students and public figures based on a research carried on by 11th grade students. Our main speakers were Mario Balint, who talked about his experience as a war reporter in Croatia 1991, Transnistria 1992, Kosovo 1999, Afganistan 2002, 2005 and 2007 and Irak 2003-2010; Ileana Cristina Rotaru from Nevo Parudimos, who discussed with the students the role of media in Holocaust representations and about children’s rights in conflict areas; and Adela Schindler who presented her researched based on interviews with Holocaust survivors from Resita area.

 

On Jan. 30, the activity Violence is the weapon of those who lack arguments was organized to celebrate the International Day for Non-violence in School, to reflect upon recent racist events and to work on preventing violence and promoting tolerant behaviors. A drawing exhibition titled Stop the violence was launched and students presented the ways in which Holocaust Remembrance Day is commemorated in different countries.

 

On February 20, World Day of Social Justice, we worked together with local authorities to raise awareness about the need for tolerance, respect and peace by displaying posters on these topics in bus stations.

On March 1, Zero Discrimination Day, we visited the Resita Synagogue and spoke with president Ivan Schnabel. Afterwards, the students watched a documentary with testimonies of Holocaust survivors and created posters on the following topics: Auschwitz, Hitler, Holocaust vs. Tolerance, the Holocaust in Romania, Inhuman treatment in labor camps.

 

In March and April we organized activities on Roma history, the slavery period, the deportations, but also Roma culture and traditions. Students watched and discussed documentaries and created posters. Our main guest was Daniel Grebeldinger from Nevo Parudimos.

 

We also took a group of students on a field trip to Lugoj to visit the main places of local history, the synagogue, the Max Ausnit Memorial and the History and Ethnography Museum.

 

For the quality of these activities Ghiorghita Fercea was invited by the Ministry of Education, along with 14 other teachers, to participate in a training course organized by Yad Vashem.

Contact

For more information about The Olga Lengyel Institute for Holocaust Studies and Human Rights (TOLI), please contact info@toli.us

TOLI is located at 58 East 79th Street in Manhattan. (get directions)