In Spring 2019, HKHTC, the University of Hong Kong and Yad Vashem presented the “Spot of Light: Women in the Holocaust” exhibition at both St. Paul’s Co-educational College in Central and the St. Paul’s Convent School in Causeway Bay. There were also opening lectures delivered by HKHTC board member and HKU professor Dr Roland Vogt.
Yom Hashoah, Holocaust Memorial Day, is observed every year. It is a day of commemoration of the six million Jews who perished in the Holocaust as a result of actions carried out by Nazi Germany. On 2 May 2019, HKHTC was honored to host the annual Yom Hashoah ceremony, which was held at the Jewish Community Centre, in remembrance of the millions of Jewish lives that perished in the Holocaust. Religious and lay leaders, representatives from many consulates, students, and members of the community paused both to reflect on the horrors of the Holocaust and recommit to engaging with its history and mandate.
HKHTC – Facing History Teachers Training Workshop Series at Asia Society: Teaching NIGHT by Elie Wiesel
On 27 April 2019, the Hong Kong Holocaust and Tolerance Centre, Facing History and Ourselves and Asia Society organized a one-day workshop which aimed to prepare teachers to interweave a literary analysis of Elie Wiesel’s powerful and poignant memoir with an exploration of the relevant historical context underlying Wiesel’s experience. The workshop explored the central questions: How is our identity shaped and reshaped by the circumstances we encounter? How do tragedy and trauma influence an individual’s identity and choices?
Thanks so much for joining our teachers training workshop with Facing History and Ourselves at Asia Society last weekend. It was wonderful to have a full house.
On 3 March 2019, the Hong Kong Holocaust and Tolerance Centre was delighted to co-organise the screening and discussion event ‘Bye Bye Germany’ at Broadway Cinematheque:
Bye Bye Germany –
Screening and Discussion with Simon K. Li, HKHTC Executive Director
Chinese and English captions will be available. 電影提供中、英文字幕。
The post-screening discussion will be conducted in Cantonese. 座談會以廣東話進行。
About the speaker:
Simon K. Li is the Executive Director of the Hong Kong Holocaust and Tolerance Centre. An award-winning former journalist in Canada, he was a Senior Lecturer and Visiting Educator at the Amsterdam-based Anne Frank House.
HKHTC Executive Director Simon K. Li was interviewed by the New York Times, which reported on a singer in Thailand who wore a swastika during a recent performance. In the article, Simon noted that Holocaust and genocide education in Asia is “very limited.” With the New York Times having over 3 million digital and print subscribers, the article provided major international exposure to HKHTC’s work and message. The New York Times article can be read here.
HKHTC’s important work recently received extensive coverage in the local and international press. Eva Koralnik was interviewed by multiple media outlets, including Radio Television Hong Kong, the South China Morning Post, the Chinese-language Oriental Daily, the Jewish Times Asia and news outlets in Macau. These publications have a combined circulation of over 2 million readers, enabling a significant portion of the community in Hong Kong and Macau to become aware of Eva’s account of the results of hatred and discrimination.
HKHTC was pleased to jointly coordinate the opening ceremony of the ‘Spots of Light: Women in the Holocaust’ exhibition with the University of Hong Kong (HKU) on Wednesday, 13 February. The well-attended event included presentations by Israeli Consul-General Ahuva Spieler, HKHTC board member Dr. Roland Vogt, HKU academic Elizabeth LaCouture and Elsa High School students Elianna Diestel and Sarah Cohen.
This is a special project organized along with the University of Hong Kong and in cooperation with Yad Vashem.
In cooperation with The Commercial Press bookstore, HKHTC co-hosted an International Holocaust Remembrance Day lecture presented by Simon K. Li. The public lecture was well received, with most attendees in the fully booked venue staying well beyond the scheduled event closing and asking many questions about the Holocaust.
Budapest-born Holocaust survivor, Ms Eva Koralnik, Eva spoke to 11 schools and universities during her visit to Hong Kong and Macau. Her presentations created a personal connection with over 3,000 students and community members, the large majority of whom never previously met a Holocaust survivor. Feedback was overwhelmingly positive as Eva made an unforgettable impression on everyone who heard her story.
HKHTC hosted the United Nations Holocaust Memorial Day (“UNHMD”) commemoration on 23 January at Hong Kong’s Sai Ying Pun Community Complex. Budapest-born Holocaust survivor, Ms Eva Koralnik, delivered a moving and memorable keynote address to over 250 people. Eva told the incredible story of her escape from Nazi-occupied Hungary in 1944 and the noble actions of Swiss diplomat Dr Harald Feller to save Eva, her family, and many others. Dr Feller was later officially recognized as a Righteous Among the Nations. Eva’s deeply personal and eloquent account was a reminder of the terrifying consequences of hatred and intolerance, as well as the great difference one individual, such as Dr Feller, can make in our world. The UNHMD ceremony also included many commemorative activities, including the lighting of six candles in memory of the six million Jews who were murdered in the Holocaust. Consistent with the commemoration’s theme of “Being a Woman in the Holocaust”, the six candles were lit by female members of the community, following an introduction by Consul General Ahuva Spieler of the Consulate General of Israel in Hong Kong and Macau. Attending dignitaries included the Hong Kong SAR’s first and former Chief Executive, the Honourable Tung Chee-hwa, and the HKSAR’s Permanent Secretary for Education Mrs Ingrid Yeung. Many Consuls General, business leaders, and members of the local community also attended.
The UNHMD commemoration and related activities were made possible by the Fok Ying Tung Foundation’s generous sponsorship. Cathay Pacific also provided strong support.