Janine Weber addressing 150 students and staff members of different faiths, backgrounds and beliefs at an event organised by Hertfordshire J-Soc
UJS is proud to engage a host of students, from a multitude of faith and non-faith backgrounds to partake in the commemoration of the Holocaust. The living memory of the Holocaust is paramount to the role UJS plays in the student community.
Our Living Memory
In 2018, UJS partnered with the Holocaust Educational Trust and NUS to launch ‘Our Living Memory,’ a project to extend Holocaust education and commemoration to students of all backgrounds across the country. This campaign aims to educate students about the events of the Holocaust, and encourage Students’ Unions to put on events for Holocaust Memorial Day, uniting the student world over an issue that has changed the course of history.
A social media campaign was launched in the two weeks leading up to Holocaust Memorial Day, featuring a series of survivor testimonies and videos with students from different backgrounds to highlight what remembering the Holocaust today means to them.
Why should students commemorate the Holocaust? @ShakiraSweet1, @nusuk President, speaks about her visit to Poland with @HolocaustUK and the impact of what she saw there. Please watch and RT as we approach Holocaust Memorial Day #OurLivingMemory #HMD2018 pic.twitter.com/DpK1q6wpml— UJS (@UJS_UK) January 15, 2018
See all the videos in this Twitter Moment.
In 2018, Jewish societies hosted 40 Holocaust Memorial Day events over 29 campuses around the UK, engaging hundreds of students. Highlights of events that have been run in the last year have included:
- 270 guests gathered to hear the testimony of Holocaust survivor Uri Winterstein at the University of Kent, hosted by Kent J-Soc in partnership with the Students’ Union.
- Reading J-Soc worked with the Students’ Union, History Society and LGBT+ Society to organise a commemorative ceremony and hosted Holocaust survivor John Dobai.
- Manchester J-Soc hosted a discussion with Dr Jean-Marc Dreyfus from the Department of Jewish Studies entitled “Are we in a post-Holocaust era?”
- Liverpool J-Soc and Students’ Union hosted Holocaust survivor Joanna Millan to speak. Their event was referenced by Stephen Twigg MP in the Parliamentary Holocaust Memorial Day debate.
Clare Levy, Edinburgh J-Soc: “Edinburgh J-Soc held a memorial service where we lit candles and read poems related to the Holocaust, followed by an opportunity to share personal family stories. It was incredible to hear so many different stories, helping us to connect with the history of our people.”
Jodeci Joseph, Hertfordshire J-Soc: "Having Janine Webber, a Holocaust survivor, attend the University of Hertfordshire was truly remarkable. It was Hertfordshire J-Soc's biggest event to date with 150 people from all backgrounds attending. The J-Soc committee worked very hard to put the event together, and I am extremely proud of the team. The event clearly illustrated how commemorating a dark point in our history can bring people together. We are looking forward to putting on more events and continuing to make a positive difference on campus."
Lessons from Auschwitz
Sabbatical Officers with UJS team members visiting Auschwitz, February 2018
UJS is also proud to continue our partnership with the Holocaust Educational Trust on their 'Lessons from Auschwitz' programme. Each year, a group of sabbatical officers from across the country participate in a 3 day course: an orientation day; a one-day trip to Auschwitz-Birkenau; and a follow-up seminar. Jasmin Beckett's blog about her experience was published in the Jewish News - read it here, as was Abdi Duale's here.
Our Holocaust Memorial Day resource pack can be downloaded here.