Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies

Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies

April 24, 2008 09:34 ET

Thousands of High School Students Attend Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Film Screenings

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - April 24, 2008) - Over the past year, Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies (FSWC) has screened the critically acclaimed movie, "I Have Never Forgotten You: The Life and Legacy of Simon Wiesenthal" for over 7,500 students from public, Catholic and private high schools across Ontario and Quebec.

During the spring and fall of 2007, the movie was seen by close to 4,500 students from 40 schools. This year to date, over 3,000 students from 20 schools have participated in 12 screenings hosted by FSWC. Students who have attended these screenings are in Grades 10, 11 and 12 and attend schools in Milton, Oakville, Mississauga, Toronto, Richmond Hill, Newmarket, Ottawa and Montreal. The movie was also shown to 500 students attending two March of the Living International group screenings in Toronto and Montreal.

"Students are the future generation of our society, and by providing them with a glimpse into the life of Simon Wiesenthal, we have an unprecedented opportunity to affect change," said Avi Benlolo, President and CEO of FSWC. "By exposing students to the atrocities of the Holocaust through the eyes of a man that dedicated his life to seeking justice and fighting prejudice against others, we are laying the foundation for a society that will take a stand against intolerance based on religion, race, nationality or ethnicity."

Students attending the screenings provided personal reflections on the film. Among them is a comment received from a Grade 10 student in the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board, which clearly reflects key themes from the film: "The main message of this film is that one person can make a difference in the world, and that (we) must never forget about what has happened in the past because then we risk it happening again."

"I Have Never Forgotten You: The Life and Legacy of Simon Wiesenthal" chronicles the life of Simon Wiesenthal, a Holocaust survivor who lost 89 family members, helped track down over 1,100 Nazi war criminals and spent six decades fighting antisemitism and prejudice against all people. Watching the early efforts of the US government to prosecute Nazi war criminals he realized, "There is no freedom without justice," and initially decided to dedicate a few years to that quest. A few years turned into the rest of his life.

About Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies

Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies is a Canadian human rights organization dedicated to fostering tolerance and understanding through community involvement, educational outreach and social action. It has 25,000 members across Canada, and confronts important contemporary issues including racism, antisemitism, terrorism and genocide. The Center is affiliated with the world-wide, Los Angeles-based Simon Wiesenthal Center, an accredited Non-Government Organization with status at international agencies, including the United Nations, UNESCO, OSCE and the Council of Europe. With over 400,000 members of all faiths around the world, the Simon Wiesenthal Center has offices in New York, Miami, Paris, Jerusalem, Buenos Aires and Toronto. Simon Wiesenthal died in 2005 after devoting his life to preserving the memories of the victims of the Holocaust, while simultaneously seeking justice for the war criminals. Visit: www.fswc.ca.

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