Yesterday, First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon MSP joined our students, Iona and Jo, as well as 200 students and teachers from across Scotland on the Lessons from Auschwitz Project.
October has been a significant month for the Project, marking our 200th visit to Auschwitz-Birkenau. To date, over 37,000 students and teachers have visited the camp as part of this unique project.
Every year, through this Project, students from across the country learn about the Holocaust, they hear the testimony of a Holocaust survivor, and they visit the site where over 1 million Jewish men, women and children were murdered.
In today’s climate, where we see increasing incidents of antisemitism, and in the shadow of the tragic attack at the Tree of Life Congregation Synagogue in Pittsburgh on Saturday, we know why the Trust’s work is so vital. It is important now, more than ever, to ensure that young people from every background can see for themselves where racism, prejudice and antisemitism can ultimately lead.
Reflecting on the visit, the Scottish First Minister commented, “it’s hard to put into words the impact. The sheer scale of the horror and the remnants of so many lives, the shoes, suitcases, photos, is hard to comprehend.”
“We must ensure the Holocaust is never forgotten. The work of the Holocaust Educational Trust is vital in educating young people about the Holocaust and what can happen if prejudice and racism become acceptable in a society. I’m proud the Scottish Government is able to support them to continue their important work and I am honoured to be participating in this visit.”
We are so proud of the thousands of young people who, having seen Auschwitz with their own eyes, go on to become our Ambassadors; a generation of advocates for history, an army of young people from every background, ready to stand up and speak out against hatred whenever and wherever it is found.
Iona Copeland said ‘the whole experience has been really emotional but also amazing. We have learnt so much and it’s been a great experience to be part of. To be selected along with Jo to represent Dyce Academy has been a life changing opportunity’