Jewish Community Services serves 600 Holocaust survivors living in Miami-Dade County by offering support, care and compassion for this unique population.  JCS care managers customize plans that may include at-home counseling, emergency services and home health care. They also assist in claiming and recovering assets from European settlement funds, bank accounts and pensions.

The Annual Holocaust Education Week, presented by the Holocaust Memorial of the Greater Miami Jewish Federation, takes place next week from Monday, February 23rd – Friday, February 27th.  All events are free and open to the public.

The five-day series will feature perspectives on the Holocaust based on eyewitness accounts, scholarly research and cultural presentations. The series is sponsored by Naomi Wilzig in memory of Siggi B. Wilzig.

Monday, February 23, 7 pm
70 Years After Auschwitz: The Rise of Anti-Semitism
Aventura Turnberry Jewish Center 20400 NE 30th Ave., Aventura 

On January 27, 2015, the 70th Anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz was commemorated. The last few years have seen a noticeable increase in anti-Semitism, especially in Europe. Is there a connection between fading historical memory of the Holocaust and the rise of anti-Semitism? Dr. Robert Jan Van Pelt is a Holocaust scholar and professor at the University of Waterloo, Canada. He is well known for his role as the star witness defending scholar Deborah Lipstadt in the Holocaust denier David Irving libel trial.

Tuesday, February 24, 11:15 am
Surviving Mengele and the Holocaust: Leah’s Journey to Freedom
Miami Dade College – Homestead Campus Building F, Room F222 | 500 College Terrace Homestead

Czechoslovakian teenager Leah Cik Roth survived four concentration camps, Mengele’s selections, her release from inside a gas chamber, and a death march. In anticipation of her upcoming memoir, My Eyes Looking Back at Me: Insight into a Survivor’s Soul, Leah will speak about her personal experiences. Leah Cik Roth is retired and lives in Aventura, Florida.

Tuesday, February 24, 7 pm
Film Series Screening: Disobedience: The Sousa Mendes Story (In French with English Subtitles) With Post-Film Discussion

Beth Torah Benny Rok Campus 20350 NE 26th Ave., North Miami Beach One of the great untold stories of World War II, Aristides de Sousa Mendes, the Portuguese General Consul in Bordeaux, France, in defiance of strict orders from his government, issued 30,000 visas to refugees (including 10,000 Jews) fleeing the Germans. Holocaust scholar Yehuda Bauer describes Sousa Mendes’ actions as one of the greatest acts of rescue in World War II. Post-film discussion moderator Robert Jacobvitz has championed the cause of Aristides de Sousa Mendes since the 1980s and is the Florida representative of the Sousa Mendes Foundation.

Wednesday, February 25, 2 pm
Film Series Screening: One Survivor Remembers: the Gerda Weissman Klein Story With Post-Film Discussion and Survivor Panel
Holocaust Memorial Miami Beach 1933-1945 Meridian Ave., Miami Beach

Gerda Weissman Klein survived six years of Nazi rule including a 350-mile death march, weighing only 68 pounds on the day of her liberation. Her inspiring story of survival is one of courage and perseverance. Post-film discussion and panel with Holocaust survivors Joe Sachs and Fred Mulbauer, moderated by Dr. Miriam Klein Kassenoff, Chairperson of Holocaust Education Committee.

Wednesday, February 25, 7 pm
In Defiance of Hitler: The Secret Mission of Varian Fry
Holocaust Memorial Miami Beach 1933-1945 Meridian Ave., Miami Beach

Thursday, February 26, 9:50 am
Miami Dade College Kendall Campus, Building 6 Room 6120 | 11011 SW 104th St., Kendall

Thursday, February 26, 1:30 pm 
Scheck Hillel Community School 19000 NE 25th Ave., North Miami Beach (Hillel students only) 

American journalist Varian Fry was sent to Vichy, France, in 1940 by the Emergency Rescue Committee, a private American relief organization. During his 13 months there, he ran a clandestine escape network which succeeded in rescuing 4,000 prominent Jews and non-Jews. He is one of only three Americans to be awarded Yad Vashem’s Righteous Among the Nations honor. Carla McClafferty is a freelance writer and speaker. She is the author of In Defiance of Hitler: The Secret Mission of Varion Fry, as well as other non-fiction books about historical figures

Thursday, February 26, 7 pm
Building Miami Beach: The Impact of Holocaust Survivors
Holocaust Memorial Miami Beach 1933-1945 Meridian Ave., Miami Beach

The history of Miami Beach wouldn’t be the same without the contributions of the Holocaust survivors who came here after World War II to rebuild their lives. Their impact on the landscape, culture and prosperity of Miami Beach cannot be underestimated, including the behind-the-scenes stories of the creation of the Holocaust Memorial. Panel discussion led by Rabbi Solomon Schiff

Rabbi Schiff is Immediate Past Chair of the Holocaust Memorial Miami Beach. This program is part of the 100 years of Miami Beach Celebration.

Friday, February 27, 9:30 am
Miami Beach Senior High School 2231 Prairie Ave., Miami Beach (10th-, 11th- and 12th- grade students only) 

Students will spend the morning with two Holocaust survivors, Alex Gross and Allan Hall, volunteers at the Holocaust Memorial Miami Beach who will share their first-hand experiences. Through meaningful conversation with the survivors, students will get insight into the World War II years and how these survivors forged new lives in a new country.

Moderator David Reese is a language arts teacher in his 15th year with Miami-Dade Public Schools.

About Holocaust Education Week

Holocaust Education Week is a community-wide program of the Holocaust Memorial Miami Beach in cooperation with Aventura Turnberry Jewish Center, Beth Torah Benny Rok Campus, City of Miami Beach Cultural Affairs Program, Cultural Arts Council Florida International University Urban Space Museum Miami Beach Miami Beach Centennial, Celebrating 100 Years, Miami Dade College Miami Jewish Film Festival/Center for the Advancement of Jewish Education Miami-Dade County Public Schools Department of Social Sciences, Scheck Hillel Community School, with special thanks to the Florida Department of Education.

For more information about Holocaust Education Week and to register, visit or call 305.538.1663.

Click here to link to the brochure