by George J Elbaum
The Jewish Family and Children’s Services (JFCS) has organized an annual Day of Learning since 2003, inviting students and educators from schools throughout California to participate in numerous workshops to gain a deeper understanding of the Holocaust and patterns of genocide, and to inspire moral courage and social responsibility in the future. This year’s program included separate workshops for students and for educators, each led by a faculty member and each concluding with an eyewitness testimony by a survivor of the Holocaust or genocide. This year’s Day of Learning was held again at San Francisco’s Galileo High School, with 600 students and 100 educators participating, the students in 2 out of 15 workshops and the educators in a choice of 3. My presentation was to 27 students in a workshop led by JFCS’s Taylor Epstein about propaganda in Nazi Germany.
JFCS’s Nina Grotch and Nikki Bambauer arranged my presentation, and Nikki was one of the on-site organizers of the event. JFCS volunteer Debbie Acquaro was my on-site guide, ensuring that I found the right room for my presentation and, afterwards, that I found the parking lot of Galileo High School – neither an easy task!
P.S. After my presentation I was stopped in the hallway by a loud “George!” and was very pleasantly surprised by 5 students from St. Peter’s School, where I spoke January 14, 2016.