Federation to host virtual tour of Auschwitz on Jan. 23

By Reporter staff

The Jewish Federation of Greater Binghamton will host a live virtual tour of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camp on Sunday, January 23, at 9:30 am. The program is offered in partnership with the Center for Holocaust Education of the East Valley Jewish Community Center, AZ. The tour of the death camp will include historical footage, aerial photographs, drone videos and testimonies of survivors. There is no cost for the tour due to a generous grant from the Victor and Esther Rozen Foundation. The tour is being sponsored by the Sisterhoods of Beth David Synagogue, Temple Concord and Temple Israel. Only 45 spots will be available. To register for the event, visit https://events.idonate.com/auschwitz. Due to the limited number of spots, those interested are asked to sign up only if they can definitely attend the tour.

“We hope the community will take advantage of this meaningful experience,” said Shelley Hubal, executive director of the Federation. “This January marks the 76th anniversary of the liberation of the camp. Many of us will never have the opportunity to travel to Europe to visit in person and this tour is the next best way to understand the atrocities of that time. We are very grateful to our sponsors for supporting this Zoom tour.”

Barbara Zelter took the tour earlier this year and called it a “memorable experience.” She noted, “I had never visited Auschwitz in person, but taking this virtual tour brought to life all that I have read and seen in the media, newspapers and books. Thanks to Federation for offering this Zoom event to see part of our history that must never be forgotten. I encourage everyone to be part of the virtual tour.”

The Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camp was the largest of the German Nazi camps and extermination centers, consisting of more than 40 individual camps. More than one million men, women and children died there. Located in Poland, the killing center was open between 1940-45. Estimates on the numbers of those killed are 960,000 Jews; 74,000 non-Jewish Poles; 21,000 Roma: 15,000 Soviet prisoners of war; and 10,000-15,000 other nationalities. (Figures are from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.)