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

Through our research and educational programs, the Institute harnesses the power of its archive of personal testimonies from witnesses to genocide in order to do our part to build a better world.

Latest News

USC Shoah Foundation today mourns the loss of a close friend, George Weiss, a longtime volunteer with the Institute and a Holocaust survivor who endured homelessness and life on the run as a young child separated from his parents in both France and Belgium during the war. He was 87. Weiss was a familiar and beloved presence at the offices of the Institute, stopping in every week to curate and work with clips of video testimony from the Visual History Archive, which contains 55,000 life stories of survivors and witnesses to the Holocaust and other genocides.
Thursday, December 17, 2020 - 2:00pm
We are very saddened at the USC Shoah Foundation to learn that our friend and Holocaust survivor Cantor Moshe Taube has passed away at age 93. Cantor Taube was among 1,200 Jews saved by Oskar Schindler during the Holocaust and led in the chanting of prayers at Congregation Beth Shalom in Pittsburgh.
Friday, December 11, 2020 - 4:57pm
The Last Goodbye virtual reality experience is now available on Oculus Rift. Four years ago, Pinchas Gutter traveled back to the Majdanek concentration camp in Poland, where he had been imprisoned as a child during the Holocaust. In this emotional journey, Pinchas shares his firsthand testimony of what he saw and experienced there and invites you into the spaces and memories with him.
Tuesday, December 8, 2020 - 2:21pm
We are very saddened to learn of the passing of our dear friend and valued colleague Dr. Sharon Gillerman on November 20, 2020, at the age of 60.   Sharon was a scholar in Jewish history on faculty at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC) and at USC for more than 20 years. Her scholarship focused on modern German and central European Jewish history with a particular interest in gender history, cultural studies, popular culture, and transnational history.   
Tuesday, November 24, 2020 - 10:54pm
During Florida’s Holocaust Education Week, 12,000 students and educators from school districts across the state experienced a livestreamed theatrical performance and concert with author and virtuoso concert pianist Mona Golabek. A recording of the broadcast can be viewed on Facebook.
Friday, November 20, 2020 - 4:18pm
A new FBI report says hate crimes increased dramatically last year by the highest margin since 2008. Antisemitic hate crimes rose by 14 percent with a total of 953 hate crimes recorded against Jews and Jewish institutions. Reported incidents of assault, vandalism and harassment included a white supremacist shooting at a Chabad center in Poway, California, a shooting in Jersey City, New Jersey, and a stabbing in Monsey, New York.
Friday, November 20, 2020 - 12:53pm

Creative Storytelling

Our storytelling projects are both based on and inspired by the more than 55,000 testimonies in the Institute’s archive. They are a deeper look into the emotional complexities of our survivor stories and told through the written word, video, audio and photography. They are an opportunity 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.

“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
USC Shoah Foundation’s Immersive Innovations team headed to Mexico in March of this year to spend a week with Holocaust survivors Dolly and Julio Botton. The couple, who have been together for more than 50 years, were part of the Institute’s first collection of videotaped testimonies back in the 1990s.
Tuesday, July 28, 2020 - 5:41pm
I was laying in bed one day scrolling through Instagram, lost in the endless stories that have me so addicted to my phone. I skipped some and lingered on others, navigating the echo chamber of social media like a pro before coming across my local bookstore’s account. They were sharing books to read while their doors were temporarily closed due to Coronavirus. A vibrant yellow and blue cover with the words, A Nail The Evening Hangs On, caught my eye; it was a book of poetry — a rare purchase for me, but the nod to the poet’s Cambodian history pulled me right in.
Sunday, July 19, 2020 - 12:18pm
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.
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Our education programs bring the voices of survivors into classrooms, impacting future generations to build a better world based on empathy, understanding and respect.