On Friday 26th February 2016, 55 year 9 students from Bishop Stopford’s school will hear testimony from Holocaust survivor, Renee Salt, as part of a visit organised by the Holocaust Educational Trust (HET).
The testimony will be followed by a question and answer session to enable students to better understand the nature of the Holocaust and to explore its lessons in more depth. The visit is part of the Holocaust Educational Trust’s extensive all year round Outreach Programme, which is available to schools across the UK.
Ms Anya Peyton the Head of History at Bishop Stopford’s School said:
“It is a privilege for us to welcome Renee Salt to our school and her testimony will remain a powerful reminder of the horrors so many experienced. We are grateful to the Holocaust Educational Trust for co-ordinating the visit and we hope that by hearing Renee’s testimony, it will encourage our students to learn from the lessons of the Holocaust and make a positive difference in their own lives.”
Karen Pollock MBE, Chief Executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust added:
“The Holocaust Educational Trust educates and engages students from across the UK, from all communities about the Holocaust and there can be no better way than through the first-hand testimony of a survivor. Renee’s story is one of tremendous courage during horrific circumstances and by hearing her testimony, students will have the opportunity to learn where prejudice and racism can ultimately lead.
“At the Trust, we impart the history of the Holocaust to young people, to ensure that we honour the memory of those whose lives were lost and take forward the lessons taught by those who survived.”
For further press information, please contact Samantha Abrahams on 020 7222 6822 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information about the Holocaust Educational Trust please visit www.het.org.uk
Notes for Editors
About Renee Salt
Renee was born in Poland in 1929. She lived with her parents and younger sister and had many aunts and uncles. After the occupation of Poland at the start of the Second World War, Renee was sent to live with her grandparents in Kalisz after her family’s house was ‘commandeered’ by Nazi officers.
In 1942 Renee went with her mother and father on the transport to the Łodz ghetto where her father’s parents were already living. She stayed here until 1944, when, along with her parents, she was taken by train to Auschwitz-Birkenau, where they managed to survive a Selektion.
After surviving a Selektion Renee and her mother were then transported to a warehouse in the Hamburg docks, Germany. From there, in March 1945, they were again moved, this time to Bergen-Belsen, where they were liberated on 15th April 1945 by the British army. Renee’s mother died 12 days later in hospital.
After liberation, Renee moved with her Aunt to Paris, where she met Charles who was in the British army. They married in 1949 and had two children. Today Renee lives in north London and has five grandchildren. Renee regularly speaks in schools about her experiences during the Holocaust.
About the Holocaust Educational Trust
The Holocaust Educational Trust was founded in 1988 during the passage of the War Crimes Act. Our aim is to raise awareness and understanding in schools and amongst the wider public of the Holocaust and its relevance today. We believe that the Holocaust must have a permanent place in our nation’s collective memory.
One of the Trust’s earliest achievements was to ensure that the Holocaust was included in the National Curriculum for England in 1991 – for Key Stage 3 students (11-14 year olds). The Holocaust has remained on the National Curriculum since then. We also successfully campaigned to have the assets of Holocaust victims and survivors released and returned to their rightful owners in the late 1990s.
Since 1999 the Trust’s Lessons from Auschwitz Project has given thousands of post-16 students and teachers the opportunity to visit the Nazi concentration and death camp Auschwitz-Birkenau as part of a four-part educational programme. Since 2006 the Project has received Government funding.
Having played a crucial role in the establishment of Holocaust Memorial Day in the UK in 2001, the Trust continues to play a key role in the delivery of this national commemorative day.
In 2010 the Government issued a new award to recognise the British men and women who came to the aid of Jewish people and other persecuted groups during the Holocaust – as a direct result of an initiative by the Trust to raise their profile and secure formal recognition for them.
At the Holocaust Educational Trust’s Appeal Dinner in September 2013, the Prime Minister announced the establishment of a national Holocaust Commission to establish what further measures should be taken to ensure a lasting memorial to the Holocaust in this country. In January 2015, the Prime Minister, with cross-party support, endorsed the recommendations of the Commission, which will include a striking new national memorial and accompanying learning centre by 2020.
In January 2015, the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced that the Royal Mint has commissioned a special commemorative medal to mark 70 years since the end of the Holocaust, an initiative of the Holocaust Educational Trust.
We work in schools, colleges and higher education institutions, providing teacher training workshops and lectures, as well as teaching aids and resource materials.
Our activities include:
The Outreach Programme: A central part of our work, the Holocaust Educational Trust’s Outreach Programme allows students and teachers the opportunity to hear survivor testimony firsthand and take part in focused workshops designed and delivered by our trained educators. The impact of hearing a Holocaust survivor speak is something most people never forget and is a key feature of our approach to this subject. The Programme is free of charge, and over 90,000 students a year take part.
Lessons from Auschwitz Project: The Holocaust Educational Trust’s Lessons from Auschwitz Project for post-16 students and teachers is now in its sixteenth year and has taken over 26, 000 students and teachers from across the UK to the Nazi concentration and death camp Auschwitz-Birkenau, as well as many MPs and other guests. The four-part course is open to two students from every school and college in England, Scotland and Wales, and incorporates a one-day visit to Auschwitz-Birkenau. The visits, combined with Orientation and Follow-up seminars, leave an unforgettable emotional and educational mark on participants. The Project aims to increase knowledge and understanding of the Holocaust based on the premise that ‘hearing is not like seeing’ and to signal what can happen if prejudice and racism become acceptable.
Ambassador Programme: Following on from their involvement in the Lessons from Auschwitz Project, participants become Holocaust Educational Trust Ambassadors – people who are committed to educating others about the Holocaust and its contemporary relevance. Ambassadors have been invested with the responsibility for delivering a powerful message about what happened during the Holocaust to their peers and wider communities. To mark our 25th anniversary, we appointed Regional Ambassadors, who have all shown outstanding commitment to ensuring that the lessons of the Holocaust are not forgotten – their role is to coordinate and encourage the work of Ambassadors in their area. We now work with 65 Regional Ambassadors representing every region in the UK.
Resource Development: The Holocaust Educational Trust develops engaging and interactive educational resources for use by teachers and students, almost all of which are available free of charge. Our Teaching Tools website allows teachers to download lesson plans and classroom activities developed by Holocaust educational specialists, whenever they need them. We also work in partnership with other organisations to develop materials such as Introduction to the Holocaust: Footballers Remember, developed in partnership with the Football Association following the England squad’s visit to Auschwitz-Birkenau; the BAFTA-winning Recollections: Eyewitnesses Remember the Holocaust, developed in conjunction with the USC Shoah Foundation Institute; and Thinking Film, Thinking History developed in partnership with Film Education. The Trust’s latest educational project, 70 voices: Victims, Perpetrators, Bystanders explores the complexities of the Holocaust through 70 individual voices – including the victims, perpetrators, bystanders and those who rescued Jews. It has been designed as an app to give everyone the opportunity to learn something new about the Holocaust using the latest digital technology.
Teacher training: As the UK’s foremost authority in Holocaust education, the Holocaust Educational Trust delivers teacher training to trainee teachers at institutions of higher education and to practising teachers as part of their Continuing Professional Development. We partner with schools, local authorities and educational organisations to develop bespoke workshops, and each year the Trust leads several UK-based seminars bringing teachers into contact with leading Holocaust scholars. Additionally, our Teacher Study Visit series gives British teachers the opportunity to learn abroad from international experts and to consider the use of historical sites to enhance students’ understanding of the Holocaust. We have led visits to Israel, Lithuania, France, Germany and Poland. All teacher training courses are open to practising teachers from across the country.