On January 15th the fourth cohort of the Remember Project traveled by school bus to Columbia to tour the Anne Frank Center and the Columbia Holocaust memorial. We were joined at the memorial by Lilly Filler, Child of Holocaust Survivors and President of the South Carolina Council on the Holocaust. This year's Remember Project cohort is comprised of 11 teens from diverse backgrounds representing eight local public and private schools in the greater Charleston area. Read below as Peter Tunick, Junior at Porter Gaud share about our visit to Coulmbia.
I chose to join the Remember project because I crave opportunities to grow my knowledge. My Father’s side of the family is Jewish, so I have always been interested in expanding my knowledge on important topics, like remembering the Holocaust. I believe being able to work and listen with other kids my age makes it fun too, in the sense that we all have the same mindset and want to be able to help educate coming generations.
What stood out to me the most from the visit to Columbia was the effort and hard work put in by the family for the Holocaust Memorial in Memorial Park. Being able to hear the countless stories from their connections of families and friends and their experiences was powerful to me. I look forward to the opportunity of speaking with Holocaust Survivors and their children. Any sort of relation or story is important, especially to help teach new generations so it is never forgotten.
What surprised me the most about the Anne Frank Center was the secret room they have and how accurate it is compared to the real room that the Frank Family hid in. Being able to sit on the furniture, see the few books on the table, and the small desk in the corner really put into perspective how crammed it was. It is truly amazing to me how they lived there for so long in such a small space, barely being able to talk to each other every day because of how risky it was.
I learned how much the history of the Holocaust truly means to people, especially survivors and their children. The impact of visiting Memorial Park was truly special. Getting to hear from Lilly Filler and her family as well as a Vietnam Veteran who stopped by was impactful. This goes to show how even the littlest things can make the biggest impacts.
I would 100% recommend visiting the Anne Frank Center. The wide variety of books, graphics, and rooms really make it special. Seeing timelines which helped guide us through each room, paintings of famous people like Anne Frank herself, and the maps spread throughout the building was helpful and educational. Thank you to the Charleston Jewish Federation, the Anne Frank Center, and Lilly Filler for providing me with such an interesting tour and experience. -Peter Tunick
High school students have a rare and unique opportunity to study the Holocaust and other genocides by becoming an ambassador in their school and community through the Remember Project. For high school students looking for a meaningful and profound community service experience, this cohort is an excellent option with monthly meetings to ensure this next generation is committed to ‘Always remembering’. For more information on the Remember Program visit https://www.jewishcharleston.org/remember