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New International Seminars Wing Opens January 30

New building to meet increased interest in Holocaust education

26 January 2012

On January 30, 2012, Yad Vashem will inaugurate the new International Seminars Wing of the International School for Holocaust Studies, generously supported by Joseph Gottdenker of Canada along with Friends of Yad Vashem worldwide, and the new Edmond J. Safra Lecture Hall, donated by the Edmond J. Safra Philanthropic Foundation. The new wing adds 45,000 square feet of space to the International School, and provides state-of-the-art facilities, to meet the ever-expanding demand for educational seminars for teachers and opinion-shapers from Israel and around the globe.

The inauguration event will take place with the participation of Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird, Israeli Minister of Education Gideon Sa’ar, the donors, dignitaries and educators currently participating in seminars at the International School from Taiwan and Latin America. The event will take place at 10:15 in Hebrew with English translation and is open to the press. RSVP: 02 644 3410/2.

Since the establishment of the International School for Holocaust Studies in 1994 and the redevelopment of the entire campus, Yad Vashem has become a world center for teaching about the Holocaust.

“Paradoxically, more than six decades later, it seems that interest in the Holocaust, as well as the desire of educators to learn about the event and acquire the tools for meaningful Holocaust education is only growing,” said Avner Shalev, Chairman of Yad Vashem. "Over the past few years, the number of seminars for educators has doubled; in the last year alone, the School has hosted 67 seminars for educators and lay leaders from around the globe."

The International School for Holocaust Studies holds seminars for educators from some 55 countries around the world, as well as in Israel; develops custom-made pedagogical tools for specific countries and age groups, in more than 20 languages, and hosts hundreds of thousands of students and soldiers annually.

The International Seminars Wing was designed by Guggenheim-Bloch, the architectural firm behind the construction of the International School building in 1999. It incorporates eleven new classrooms, a videoconference suite, conference rooms and auxiliary facilities, as well as a 330-seat lecture hall, which will greatly enrich the quality of the many large-scale events and seminars run by the School for thousands of participants each year.

The new International Seminars Wing was generously supported by: Joseph Gottdenker, Canada; Rose Landschaft, Germany; Jane and Isaac Ladelsky, Mexico; Prof. Dr. Jan Philipp Reemtsma, The Hamburg Foundation for the Advancement of Science and Culture, Germany; The Klarman Family Foundation, U.S.A.; Erika Herskovits, Germany; Rachel and Meir Yaskil, Israel; The Gewolb Family, U.S.A.; Alfred von Oppenheim Foundation, Germany; Willie & Rachel Moll (Molczadski), Canada; Paul and Pearl Caslow Foundation, Esther and David Mann and Betty Breslaw, U.S.A.; Selma Gruder Horowitz, U.S.A.; Lauren and Martin Geller, U.S.A.; Sara and Rolando Uziel, Mexico; Ivonne and Samuel Geller, Mexico; J.B. and M.K. Pritzker Family Foundation, U.S.A.; The Wolfson Family Charitable Trust, UK; La Fondation pour la Mémoire de la Shoah, France; and The Marion and Norman Tanzman Charitable Foundation, U.S.A.

The Edmond J. Safra Lecture Hall was generously supported by The Edmond J. Safra Philanthropic Foundation, Switzerland.