Holocaust Memorial Day Workshops
Once a year, around Holocaust Memorial Day we run a Series of Half Day workshops for local schools raising awareness for future generations. We are very proud of this annual project which we jointly run with Kingston and Surbiton District Synagogue.
For the past fourteen years we have been welcoming students from local schools to one of our synagogues to hear a Holocaust survivor, or a descendant, speak about their experiences. 2020 was the biggest year yet for this project, in which we welcomed around 1400 local school students.
The project consists of a series of half-day workshops, attended by around 100 pupils from a local school - students are usually in Year 9 and therefore aged 13-14.
Each workshop begins with a talk from a Survivor or an adult descendant of a survivor about their experiences during the Holocaust. A short film is also shown about people who hid Jews from the Nazis during the war.
The students then break up into small working groups to discuss the things that they have heard. Various activities will be undertaken during this time, and the students also get the opportunity to meet with the speaker in their smaller groups and ask questions.
Each workshop concludes with a very moving commemorative ceremony. Students write a personal card for the speaker and hand this to them, before lighting a candle in memory of those who lost their lives in the Holocaust and other subsequent genocides.