Our mission is to develop empathy, understanding and respect through testimony

The Shoah Foundation Story

Watch our video introduction to learn about the Institute’s history and its current mission at the University of Southern California.

Latest News

We mourn the loss of ten innocent lives in yet another mass shooting fueled by hate, this time at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York. According to authorities, the 18-year-old alleged shooter drove 200 miles to the supermarket in the predominantly African American neighborhood and livestreamed the attack. Read More
Monday, May 16, 2022 - 1:38pm
The 2021-2022 William P. Lauder Junior Interns program wrapped up last month with special guest Jewish Holocaust survivor Dr. Elena Nightingale calling on participants to speak up when confronted by discrimination and injustice. “Young people's voices are listened to [and] have more power than you think. Don’t be a bystander,” the physician and human rights activist told the interns at the final session of the 10-week program. “Make your voices heard.” Read More
Wednesday, May 11, 2022 - 2:01pm
An animated short film that brings to life the remarkable childhood journey of media personality, author and Holocaust survivor Dr. Ruth K. Westheimer netted one of the Atlanta Jewish Film Festival’s three coveted Audience Awards last month. Produced by USC Shoah Foundation and Delirio Films, Ruth: A Little Girl’s Big Journey traces Dr. Ruth’s escape from Nazi Germany during the Holocaust. The film was awarded the Atlanta Jewish Film Festival’s Best Short Film prize in early April. Read More
Wednesday, May 11, 2022 - 12:09pm

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Creative Storytelling

Our storytelling projects are both based on and inspired by the more than 55,000 testimonies in the Institute’s archive. They offer a deeper look into the emotional complexities of our survivor stories and told through the written word, video, audio and photography. They are opportunities to explore the impact that these voices have and the way in which testimony drives our understanding of conflict and grief as well as resilience, resistance and hope.

Twenty-five years ago, in October, 1995, a then 72 year-old Fanny Starr sat down in her living room in Denver, Colorado and recorded a two-hour long testimony with USC Shoah Foundation. Fanny was born as Fala Granek in 1922 in Lodz, Poland -- a diverse city where Jewish and Polish students intermingled. Her family was modern yet traditional. They spoke Polish, kept kosher, went to public school, and celebrated the Jewish holidays; she and her four siblings were assimilated in the way that many young Jewish people in the United States are today.
Friday, October 23, 2020 - 9:39am
This past May, a friend sent me an article he knew I would appreciate. It was an opinion piece in the New York Times titled “Burying My Bubby During the Pandemic” written by a comedy writer named Eitan Levine who, like me, grew up with a grandmother who survived the Holocaust. I began to read and found myself immediately wrapped inside his writing which was so honest it was cathartic. I immediately reached out to Eitan and asked if his grandmother’s testimony was in USC Shoah Foundation’s Visual History Archive.
Thursday, October 22, 2020 - 2:06pm
“I remember lots and lots of light,” Karla Ballard told me about her childhood home just outside of Philadelphia, a community called Friends of the Fairfax. “So much light. And a beautiful, long dining room table. My father was an entrepreneur and my mom was a nurse. I just remember lots of light coming into that house and having grandparents around watching us, and having Susan, Eileen, and Max — my mother’s best friends.”
Tuesday, September 8, 2020 - 2:34pm
Together We Are Stronger Than Hate

Stronger Than Hate, an initiative that draws on the power of eyewitness testimony to help students and the general public recognize and counter antisemitism, racism, xenophobia and other forms of hatred.

The Willesden Project

Inspired by the power of story to transform lives, this groundbreaking initiative available in IWitness combines testimony, technology and music to reshape Holocaust education.

Our 2020 Annual Report is Available

See how your support helped us make a measurable change.

You can help us make a difference
Our education programs bring the voices of survivors into classrooms, impacting future generations to build a better world based on empathy, understanding and respect.