The Hebrew Academy of Nassau County HS marked Yom Hashoah this past Monday in a meaningful program at which they reflected upon the Holocaust. The program featured a film of interviews created by students in the Holocaust Studies class, an essay reading presentation by the recipient of the Moshe Flescher Holocaust Memorial Scholarship, Leora Schwadron, and the presence of one of the survivors in the video, Mrs. Helen Rosenstark.
There was also a candle-lighting ceremony by grandchildren of survivors in memory of the six million Jews who perished and a presentation of an inspirational piece of artwork created by freshman Jonah Maryles, followed by a heart-warming performance of Ani Maamin and Hatikvah by members of the HANC boys’ chorus.
This fall, HANC participated in the innovative Adopt a Survivor Program, which provides students with the valuable opportunity to interview Holocaust survivors and hear their stories. Today, after 70 years, there are many people who deny that the Holocaust ever happened. In 20 years, the deniers are certain to increase.
The students who participated in this program, along with their instructor, Rabbi Aaron Friedler, took several trips to the Holocaust Resource Center in Manhasset and met with Irving Roth, Holocaust survivor, center director and founder of the Adopt a Survivor Program. Students learned that, if the children of their generation do not take on the responsibility of remembering the Holocaust, there will soon be no one to tell the story. It is, therefore, our duty to learn and pass on these stories to ensure they are never forgotten.