May 2005 Journal

next article:AJR is major donor to unique school project

AJR is major donor to unique school project

The AJR is a major donor to a unique exhibition for primary school children, the Primary Learning Centre. The Centre, aimed at 9-12-year-olds, is set to occupy 1,800 square feet on the second floor of the Beth Shalom Holocaust Centre in Nottinghamshire.

The Primary Learning Centre is a million-pound project. Beth Shalom has received a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of £499,000. In addition to the grant from the AJR, the Centre has received substantial support from Camelot, the Claims Conference and private donors.

The exhibition will tell the often overlooked stories of children in the Holocaust, including the Kindertransport. It will also feature the experiences of hidden children, who were unable to leave Nazi Europe, and commemorate those who were murdered.

Members of the Kindertransport and child survivors will be closely involved, sharing their experiences on a daily basis with children at the facility. The young visitor will sense the disorientation felt by the Kinder as he or she participates in a recreation of a typical journey. One section of the exhibition will feature a train station and the moment of departure. Visitors will be encouraged to reflect on the emotions felt by the Kinder as they faced the trauma of separation, the decision on which possessions to take with them, and the sense of a lonely journey into the unknown. State-of-the-art technology and educational expertise will be deployed to full effect in the new centre.

Beth Shalom's Chief Executive, James Smith, said that 'Every week, the Holocaust Centre's education and training programmes reach hundreds of secondary school students, sixth-formers and professionals. However, given the incidence of racism in primary schools - where in our county alone three out of four racist incidents occur - it is not a moment too soon for such a resource to be established in the UK.'

AJR Chairman Andrew Kaufman has warmly welcomed the Heritage Lottery Fund's support for the Primary Learning Centre, which he described as 'an outstanding project - a particularly appropriate move at this time, as we reflect on the 60th anniversary of the end of the Holocaust and the Second World War'. The Primary Learning Centre is due to open in the autumn.
Howard Spier

next article:AJR is major donor to unique school project