Rescue and Rescuers during the Holocaust

Thank you for participating in Echoes & Reflections Mini Course Rescue and Rescuers during the Holocaust. We hope you found the experience enriching and useful to your teaching needs. 

To further support your classroom instruction on this thematic approach, you now have access to the plethora of resources referenced throughout the course.  The materials below are listed by the section in which they were introduced in the course. 

You will find the resources below helpful in informing your teaching of rescue, rescuers, the Kindertransport, and Righteous among the Nations.

Welcome and Introduction to Echoes & Reflections Pedagogy

In this section, you were introduced to pedagogical principles for effective teaching found on the Echoes & Reflections website and our guiding questions for the course, framed in the story of rescuer Miep Gies and Holocaust victim Anne Frank.

Why Teach about Rescue in the Context of the Holocaust?
It is important to understand that the rescuers you will learn about in this unit were the exception rather than the rule. We focus our study on Arie Van Mansum.

Prewar Jewish Life and the Rise of Nazism
While study of the Holocaust almost always focuses on the crime of genocide committed in Nazi occupied Europe against the Jewish people, it often misses the important context and understanding of who Jewish people are, what Judaism means, and what Jewish life looked like before the Holocaust. This understanding reminds us and our students that Jews are individual people forming a vibrant community and that the victims of the Holocaust were robbed of their life, dignity, and agency.

Optional Additional Resources:

The Decision to Leave: Jewish Response to Kristallnacht
For many German Jews, the Kristallnacht pogrom was a breaking point leading to their decision to flee Germany. This decision was complicated by an increasingly oppressive atmosphere for Jewish people under Nazi rule and a growing international reluctance to take on refugees.

Optional Additional Resource:

Views on Aiding Jews before the War
Unfortunately, the international community made it very difficult for Jews to flee Nazism. While this course will focus on notable rescue efforts, it is important to understand that the vast majority of Jews were unable to flee from Nazi rule, and many were prohibited from doing so by the international community.

The Kindertransport, Lisa Jura, and The Children of Willesden Lane
The Kindertransport was the most successful and widely celebrated series of rescue efforts to bring Jewish minors to Great Britain as refugees. While many lives were saved, these young children faced extreme hardships separated from their families–often forever–in a new country and uncertain future. One of those children was 14-year-old musical prodigy Lisa Jura, whose perspective and legacy transcends history.

Optional Additional Resources:

Mona Golabek and the Legacy of Rescue
Mona Golabek is the daughter of Lisa Jura and carries her mother’s legacy through the power of music and literature. Here we’ll learn about why the legacy of the Kindertransport matters and how telling the story of rescue can impact future generations.

Rescue during the Holocaust
As the Nazis expanded their territory and rule over communities in Europe, and as the organized violence of the Holocaust intensified, organized emigration stopped, and it became difficult for Jews to move safely within much of Europe. The most notable shift was from fleeing to hiding. We’ll learn about the complicated decisions some made to help Jews.

Righteous among the Nations
After its establishment in 1953, Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Center, was tasked by the Israeli government of formally recognizing the “Righteous among the Nations,” non-Jewish individuals who risked or sacrificed their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust.

Additionally, the following classroom-ready Student Activities directly tie into the information you learned in this course.