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The Holocaust – A Lesson of the Past for the Present

Monica Iorga, Videle

 

This project was developed by Monica Iorga in Videle and consisted of a set of activities carried out in collaboration with several local and national institutions and NGOs. On January 27, a symposium dedicated to the International Holocaust Day took place at our school. The students presented essays, posters, drawings, and reviews in front of other students, teachers, parents and representatives of the local community.

 

In collaboration with the Friederich Ebert Foundation, we arranged the exhibition “For an active democracy against right wing extremism”. Through thematic panels, students and teachers who visited the exhibition discovered information about various forms of totalitarianism, especially right wing totalitarianism, and ways it can be fought, especially through promoting of tolerance, diversity, peace and democracy.

 

The Roma, an ethnic group affected by the Holocaust, have not been forgotten. We involved Roma students in the educational activities and we watched and discussed documentaries about the Roma Holocaust. On April 8, our students participated in the educational activities dedicated to the International Roma Day. The activities were carried out under the motto “Unity, Diversity, Acceptance”. Students presented historical information about the past of the Roma community, including Samudaripen, the forgotten Holocaust of the Roma, organized artistic moments to show the traditions and customs of the Roma community and delivered messages of respect for diversity, tolerance, multiculturalism. The activities on tolerance and diversity continued in May. Pupils, parents and community representatives proposed solutions and project ideas for improving the situation of Roma students, better integration and acceptance of them in school and in the community.

 

Students participated in a thematic excursion to visit historical objectives related to Jewish history, the Holocaust in Romania, respectively the Holocaust Museum and the Holocaust Monument in Bucharest. This visit helped students to better understand the destructive effects of totalitarianism on people’s lives, the brutal way in which fundamental rights and freedoms were violated in the name of absurd ideas such as racism, anti-Semitism and the superiority of one human race.

 

The lesson about totalitarianism was followed by a lesson on democracy, through a visit to the Romanian Parliament where the participating students learned about how democracy is currently functioning in Romania, the rule of law, where and how laws are adopted, how the principle of separation powers in the state works.

 

Our school developed a logo of the project that states that Education combats racism. All project activities have been publicized, popularized on the Facebook page of the project:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1130003427076721/?ref=bookmarks

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)