The Olga Lengyel Institute (TOLI) provides professional development seminars for educators in the US and abroad that link the lessons of the Holocaust and other genocides to current world events, thereby working with teachers to promote a human rights and social justice agenda in their classrooms. For further information, please visit .
The Olga Lengyel Institute for Holocaust Studies and Human Rights
Ten TOLI Teachers' Seminars Across
The US In 2019
TOLI wrapped up its summer with Holocaust education seminars for teachers in Wisconsin and Minnesota in August, bringing the number of programs that took place across the US to ten. Nearly 400 teachers – from Jackson, MS, to Portland, OR - benefited from TOLI’s programs, which provide the resources and expertise to teach the Holocaust and to apply its lessons in the classroom and community. A highlight of the summer programs was the Leadership Institute in New York, bringing together outstanding educators – alumni of TOLI’s flagship New York Seminar – to update, refresh, and showcase best practices. These educators, in turn, will lead TOLI satellite seminars across the country in the years to come.
Montana Program Draws on Holocaust and Native American Experience
For an idea of what a TOLI seminar means to the participants, watch this short video of the seminar that took place in Billings, MT in June. There, teachers from Idaho and Montana convened for a week to focus on Holocaust education and Native American education, and lessons that can be drawn from each. For many teachers, the experience not only will be felt in the classroom, but also in their own lives.
" A Multi-Generational Approach to Holocaust and Social Justice Education "
Milwaukee (Fox Point), Wisconsin
"A Multi-Generational Approach to Holocaust and Social Justice Education," TOLI's Milwaukee (Fox Point), Wisconsin seminar, took place July 28-Aug 2, 2019. The cohort spent time learning about the rise of anti-Semitism in Nazi Germany and the current state of anti-Semitism. Educators met with Rabbi Ron Shapiro, Rabbi Emeritus of Congregation Shalom, to learn about the importance of the synagogue in Jewish religious life. Nate Taffel, Holocaust survivor, was interviewed by Scott Lone, co-facilitator of the Wisconsin seminar.
"Honoring Resilience: Learning from the Holocaust and Dakota Exile"
St. Cloud, Minnesota
TOLI's Minnesota seminar, "Honoring Resilience: Learning from the Holocaust and Dakota Exile," was held August 4-10th, 2019, and began its first full day exploring iconic images of the Holocaust, reviewing the history of Native Peoples, and learning more about hatred, genocide, and anti-Semitism. Minnesota educators learned about the Jewish resistance through recording their stories, and also studied Dakota resilience.
Second Annual Seminar for Italy Teachers Held in Ferrara
Thirty-five teachers from across Italy gathered in Ferrara in the northern part of the country for the second annual TOLI seminar. It was a remarkable experience for the participants, some of whom had little opportunity for Holocaust education training until now. During the five-day seminar, in cooperation with CDEC, the Foundation Jewish Contemporary Documentation Center in Italy, teachers had an opportunity to hear experts, participate in workshops, and visit the new National Museum of Italian Jewish History and the Shoah, which opened in Ferrara last year. Also, they took part in a day trip to the former Fossoli Internment Camp, where about 5000 prisoners, nearly half of them Jews, were deported to the Nazi death camps. Ferrara is known for the famous book and film, The Garden of the Finzi-Continis, about the life of the local Jewish community until engulfed by the Holocaust. 
Upcoming Programs in
Lithuania and Ukraine
Next month, from October 27-31, TOLI will host its first seminar on Holocaust education in Vilnius, Lithuania, followed by one in Kiev, Ukraine. These will be first-time seminars in these countries, each of which has faced criticism over its confronting of the Holocaust and the participation of local collaborators. TOLI President Mark Berez has been at the forefront of bringing our programs to these countries, to provide teachers with the opportunity for open-ended discussion about the Holocaust. In Vilnius, one of the speakers is Nobuki Sugihara, the son of Chiune Sugihara, the Japanese diplomat who saved roughly six thousand Jewish lives in Lithuania during the Holocaust (depicted in the drawing above). 
TOLI Board Member Deborah Lauter Named to Head NYC
Hate Crimes Office
Deborah Lauter, longtime civil rights leader and member of the TOLI Board of Directors, was recently appointed as the Executive Director of the Office for the Prevention of Hate Crimes, a new organization established to prevent, monitor, and coordinate the response by New York City municipal agencies to hate crimes. “We are proud that Deborah has been chosen for this important position,” said TOLI Chairman David Field. “At a time of rising extremism, anti-Semitism, and other hate crimes, she will bring expertise and commitment to this important task.” Deborah joined the TOLI Board earlier this year and recently took part in the Montana seminar.  
In the face of rising extremism, anti-Semitism, and hate crimes across the country and in Europe, TOLI’s work is more important than ever. Over 2800 teachers in the US and another 2000 in Europe who have participated in our programs now have the training and resources they need to apply the lessons of the Holocaust in their classrooms. We cannot stop here. With your support, TOLI can reach many more teachers and students. They can and do make a difference. Please donate by clicking the link below. 
Never Again Begins in the Classroom! ®  
Did You Know You Can Donate to TOLI Through Donor-Advised Funds?
A donor-advised fund (DAF) is a type of giving program that allows you to combine the most favorable tax benefits with the flexibility to support your favorite charities. DAF Direct enables you to recommend grants to The Olga Lengyel Institute for Holocaust Studies and Human Rights (TOLI).
USA Today- The Holocaust: States Require Education About It as Anti-Semitism, Hate Crimes Surge
"Sondra Perl, director of U.S. programs for the Olga Lengyel Institute for Holocaust Studies and Human Rights in New York City, said most programs on the Holocaust, including her organization’s, stick strictly to historical fact so as “not to give fuel to deniers.”

That institute, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, the Shoah Holocaust remembrance foundation and other organizations are creating a rich catalogue of survivors’ stories — many on video recordings — to preserve their experiences even after they die. “When they are gone, the eyewitnesses will be gone,” Perl said."
The New Mexico Jewish Link- 2019 Summer Institute On Teaching the Holocaust For Social Justice Opens
"The 25 teachers attending this year represent every corner of our state. For many teachers, especially those in rural counties, interaction with members of the Jewish faith is rare, and understanding of the faith is limited. Teachers who might be interested in using the many resources available to teach the Holocaust and its lessons to their students are often overwhelmed and feel ill-equipped to take on the challenge. The purpose of the New Mexico seminar is to equip teachers with the content knowledge and tools so that they can confidently craft instruction that will meet their larger objectives."
YNET NEWS: Teaching the Holocaust in Montana
Billings, Montana would seem like an unlikely place to teach the Holocaust. After all, the Holocaust happened thousands of miles away from the tranquil Big Sky country, a state with few Jewish residents.

But for some 25 educators from nearby Idaho and throughout Montana who took a week out of their summer to learn to teach the Holocaust, they found it connected them to something much closer to home: the plight of Native Americans, across America and especially in the West.