As the Amsterdam-based Anne Frank House’s Visiting Educator, HKHTC’s Director of Education Simon Li visited the Westerbork camp, which was a WWII Nazi detention and transit camp in Hooghalen, on the Liberation Day (Dutch: Bevrijdingsdag). In the Netherlands, Liberation Day is commemorated each year on May 5th to mark the end of the occupation by Nazi Germany during WWII. During the visit at Westerbork, Mr Li also met with local students and educators from the region.
HKHTC continues to broaden its reach. HKHTC Director of Education Simon Li has served as a visiting educator at the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam this spring. During his academic visit, Mr Li and the in-house educators at the Anne Frank House have been exchanging scholarly ideas related to approaches to teaching Anne Frank’s diary in Asia and the pedagogy of Holocaust education.
“Since the days when I was a senior lecturer in academia, I’ve strived to teach tolerance and mutual respect through the inspiring story of Anne Frank,” Mr Li said. “I find this opportunity to share ideas about an important topic I’ve taught in East Asia for my entire academic life truly exciting.” An award-winning former journalist from Toronto, Mr Li served as the Head of General Education at a tertiary institute in Hong Kong before being appointed by HKHTC as its Director of Education in 2016. Anne Frank House is a writer’s house and biographical museum dedicated to Jewish wartime diarist Anne Frank.
The Joods Kindermonument is a children memorial site in Rotterdam which commemorates the deaths of 686 Jewish children who were killed by the Nazis. In Spring 2017, Director of Education Simon Li (Visiting Educator, Anne Frank House) visited the Joods Kindermonument and paid tribute to the children victims who ranged from only a few months to 12 years old. Most of them did not survive the war.
Holocaust survivor Micha Gelber, who was HKHTC’s in-house guest this January, was one of the key leaders behind this project to build a monument to commemorate these children. This monument also includes an artwork with the names of the 686 Jewish children who perished and indicates which concentration camp they were sent to.