Since 2007 the University of Essex has marked Holocaust Memorial Day with a series of events taking place around the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz Concentration Camp by Soviet troops.
Holocaust Memorial Week provides a focus for remembering the millions of people killed in the Holocaust and by Nazi persecution more widely, as well as in genocides perpetrated against targeted groups in countries such as Armenia, Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Herzegovina (Srebrenica), Sudan (Darfur) and Myanmar. It is also an opportunity for us to look at human rights issues, explore discrimination that still exists today, and lessons still to be learned by the Holocaust.
Due to COVID-19, Holocaust Memorial Week will be going digital for 2020-21 and will run from 27 January - 3 February 2021. A full programme of events will be provided very soon.
On 27 January each year, we come together to remember the victims of the Holocaust and other genocides with the 'Reading of the Names'. COVID-19 restrictions mean we will be unable to stage the Reading of the Names on campus this year, but we would like to take the opportunity this presents to explore a new approach to this act of remembrance.
We are asking our community to submit short videos in advance of Holocaust Memorial Day, reading the names you wish to commemorate. More information on the Holocaust and the other genocides we are commemorating is available on the Holocaust Memorial Day website.
Please send us your clip, or arrange for us to record you via Zoom, by 20 January. If you would like to contribute to this commemoration or would like further information, please email Holly Ward, Events and Stakeholder Engagement Officer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Each year during Holocaust Memorial Week, a number of events take place, each reflecting a different theme. These events include talks, lectures, exhibitions, film screenings and more.
The first week with a specific theme was in 2009, when 'STAND UP TO HATRED' was chosen by the National Holocaust Memorial Day Trust. This theme was chosen to highlight the extreme consequences of hatred, and help us to look at our behaviour toward others and explore how each of us can help make our communities stronger and safer.
Over the years, other themes have included; disability and euthanasia, issues including prejudice, intolerance, discrimination and stigmatization, the experiences of the Roma and Sinti, the persecution of gay men under the Nazi regime, and the struggle for the human rights and dignity of LGBT people since 1945.
"The awareness that work for greater tolerance, for human dignity and human rights starts on our doorsteps, in our schools and in our local communities."