USC Shoah Foundation partners with new Holocaust museum in Florida

Noble Horvath

The USC Shoah Foundation has partnered with the Holocaust Memorial Resource & Education Center of Florida to collaborate on content creation for the new Holocaust museum that will be located in Orlando, Florida.The Shoah Foundation has donated and created content to Holocaust museums in the past, but this is the […]

The USC Shoah Foundation has partnered with the Holocaust Memorial Resource & Education Center of Florida to collaborate on content creation for the new Holocaust museum that will be located in Orlando, Florida.The Shoah Foundation has donated and created content to Holocaust museums in the past, but this is the first time they will be designing and implementing an exhibition from the ground up.”For the first time, the eyewitness accounts of the survivors will form the beating heart of a museum dedicated to sharing their stories,” said Finci-Viterbi executive director Stephen Smith, who leads the USC team. “We are excited to work with The Holocaust Memorial Resource & Education Center of Florida to conceptualize groundbreaking experiences that inspire visitors living in and visiting Orlando for years to come. A recent study shows experiencing the stories of witnesses and survivors is one of the most effective ways to educate about the Holocaust.”The Florida Holocaust center announced that it would be expanding into downtown Orlando in 2018, moving from its current 7,000 square foot showroom to a 40,000 square foot facility.”This is an incredibly smart, powerful and prestigious partnership that benefits from the expertise, experience and shared vision of the USC Shoah Foundation,” said Pamela Kancher, executive director of The Holocaust Memorial Resource & Education Center of Florida. “Their expertise working and connecting with millions of students, teachers and scholars worldwide elevates the impact of this project.”The new museum will offer innovative and interactive exhibits throughout including the Shoah Foundation’s award-winning Dimensions in Testimony exhibit, which uses revolutionary technology to enable people to not only hear and see Holocaust survivors, but to ask them questions and get answers to any questions they pose, while “learning” from conversations with its audiences and becoming even more effective in its interactions with future generations.”This creative collaboration with the USC Shoah Foundation reflects our common commitment to integrating testimony and storytelling into the heart of our new museum and programs,” Kancher said. “It is a significant and long-term partnership intended to ensure that stories of those who survived the Holocaust are accessible and continue to inspire students – and all of our visitors – to be more empathetic, stand up to bullying and demonstrate a greater sense of social responsibility.”“Orlando has shown itself to be a community that cares about human rights and justice, which is why building this new museum and welcoming the USC Shoah Foundation partnership is both important and appropriate,” said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer. “Our city will now play an even greater role in righting the wrongs of the past and contributing to a kinder world.”Orange County Mayor Jerry L. Demings added: “This partnership will continue to teach important lessons from history and in ways that engage and remain memorable. That’s how we change the future.”Ilia Salita contributed to this report.

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