Hillels commemorate Holocaust victims online for Yom HaShoah



April 21, 2020

Hillel students organized virtual ceremonies on Yom HaShoah to honor the 6 million Jews killed in the Holocaust. Amid the coronavirus pandemic, Hillels adapted their memorials and vigils for online platforms, such as Facebook Live and YouTube. Below are snapshots from some of the programs they organized:

North Carolina Hillel

Over a 12-hour period, North Carolina Hillel students and community members read aloud the names of approximately 20,000 victims of the Holocaust. More than 100 attendees participated in the reading. New York University Hillel and University of Delaware Hillel organized similar events online.

University of Cincinnati Hillel

Students from University of Cincinnati Hillel listened to Holocaust survivor Henry Fenichel, who escaped with his mother in 1944 from the Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp to Palestine. The 82-year-old spoke about lessons learned from the Holocaust.

Hillel Israel

To commemorate Yom HaShoah, Hillel Israel organized four programs, including a virtual screening of “No Place on Earth,” a documentary about a cave once inhabited by Ukrainian Jewish families escaping the Holocaust. Students then discussed the film in a conversation led by a Hebrew University student, whose family is mentioned in the film.

Hillel at Arizona State University

Students and community members in Greater Phoenix attended a Holocaust remembrance ceremony over Zoom. During the program, co-hosted by Hillel at Arizona State University, attendees heard from Holocaust survivor Oskar Knoblauch, lit yahrzeit candles and sang songs of remembrance.

Northwestern University Hillel

At Northwestern University Hillel, students wrote letters to offer comfort to Holocaust survivors, many of whom are feeling isolated and lonely during the coronavirus. The letters were sent to survivors living in Chicago.