The Harry and Wanda Zekelman International Institute of the Righteous honors the thousands of righteous individuals who saved, or tried to save, at least one Jew, and who knowingly placed themselves in mortal danger.
The stories of these individual acts of bravery are as inspiring and uplifting as the stories of the Nazi-led murders and atrocities are horrifying and depressing. Such heroes and heroines and their families are, and always will be, honored in every Holocaust center worldwide. As the Jerusalem Talmud says: “When someone saves one life, it is as if that person had saved the whole world.”
Timeless ethical themes are arranged throughout the circular room with examples from history and classic literature.
With in this area are eight interactive stations, “What Would You Do?” programs that allow visitors to make decisions which have far-reaching consequences. On the side of each of these are “Walls of Thought” where visitors are encouraged to leave messages telling how their visit to the Holocaust Memorial Center changed or will change their thoughts and behavior patterns.
In an adjoining surround theater, the visitor may listen to a group of young people discussing interdependence. The formula ‘Matter Plus Association Equals Life’ cleverly postulates to people from all ages, the importance of respecting every human being’s contribution to society.
The Kindertransport Memory Quilts have been loaned on a permanent bases to the Holocaust Memorial Center Zekelman Family Campus, by Kirsten Grosz and her family, in memory of Hanus Grosz, the Kinder and their brave parents.
It is the ongoing mission of the Institute to discover what motivates altruistic behavior and to disseminate those findings as widely as possible with the hope that what we learn can be used to foster a more compassionate and tolerant society.