It is important that people keep standing up against forgetting and against anti-Semitism. I am pleased about initiatives like 'Witnesses of the Contemporary Witnesses', which encourage young people to do just that: Carry on the legacy of the contemporary witnesses and stand up for human rights, freedom and democracy.
We facilitate encounters between the last generation of Shoah survivors and the younger generation.
We keep the memory of the Shoah alive and pass it on to the younger generation.
We counter anti-Semitism in its various forms.
We strengthen German-Israeli relations through exchange and projects.
As a project, Witnesses of the Witnesses (Zeugen der Zeitzeugen) came into being as a result of the commemorative event on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the Wannsee Conference in Berlin in January 2012. Inspired by the speech of the then Federal President Prof. Dr. Horst Köhler before the German Bundestag in 2009, we named the project ''Witnesses of Witnesses''. Since June 2020 we are an independent, non-profit and registered association.
To date, the team has expanded to around 60 young adult volunteers. A network of visitors is developing in the individual cities, i.e. young adults regularly visit Shoah survivors and celebrate Jewish festivals together with them. Twice a year, a nationwide regular team meeting is held.
Become part of our network and get in touch with Holocaust survivors and their children and grandchildren.
Click on a pin on the map to find out more information about the work and contact of Witnesses of the Witnesses (Zeugen der Zeitzeugen) in your city.
Team Coordination & Germany - Israel Projects
For me, the view into the future is particularly important. At some point, the contemporary witnesses will no longer be with us. That is why it is very important to me to focus attention on the psychological suffering of the 2nd and 3rd generations after the Holocaust. Dealing with this dimension will continue to shape German-Israeli relations in the decades to come. In joint cooperation, we, Germans and Israelis, Christians and Jews, can send strong signals of reconciliation and hope. In addition to general management, my focus is on the "German-Israeli Exchange Program".
Education against anti-Semitism
I am involved with "Witnesses of the Witnesses" because it is a special opportunity for me, as a student of Jewish Studies and History, to combine my interests, to meet the survivors, but also to contribute my knowledge and skills.
School and education projects
I worked as an occupational therapist in various clinics and practices for over eight years. The complexity that comes with working among generations still gives me great pleasure today. I had my first encounter with a Holocaust survivor in 2009 during a private trip to Israel. A special experience for me was when Holocaust survivor Gita Koifman asked me to be her "German daughter" at the Holocaust Memorial here in Berlin during the Wannsee Conference Remembrance Days in 2012. From this experience it is my wish that many more encounters with Holocaust survivors and their children and grandchildren in Israel and Germany will be possible, so that hearts on both sides will be touched and we can set a hopeful sign for the future.
„Survived“ is a rare point of view. Due to “Witnesses of the Witnesses“ I am privileged to accompany our Holocaust survivors on their path of life. Meeting survivors, their descendants and many dedicated people at home and abroad made me think twice about history, attitude towards life and politics. Thus I feel a duty to enable such encounter to widen our view on “Never Again“, the Middle East Conflict and Holocaust denial.
Matthias is responsible for our financial area. He has been involved with his competencies since 2013.
Expert: Psychology (M.Sc.)
Tina is a trained psychologist and is available to our interviewers in an advisory capacity. She herself has had numerous encounters with survivors in Germany and Israel and has also conducted interviews herself. We are pleased that Tina has been involved in the team since the beginning of 2017.