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

Rukesha’s testimony, along with six other interviews from The 600 documentary, was recently integrated into USC Shoah Foundation’s Visual History Archive, which now holds 135 indexed and searchable interviews connected to the Genocide Against the Tutsi Rwanda. The majority of these testimonies were collected by Aegis Trust and the Kigali Genocide Memorial, in partnership with USC Shoah Foundation. The seven new testimonies include the first accounts of Rwandan liberators to be added to the collection. Read More
Friday, July 2, 2021 - 11:41am
Theogene Kayitakire, a sergeant in the Rwandan Patriotic Army, helped capture the strategic high ground of the Mount Rebero neighborhood in Kigali in April 1994, just days after the Genocide Against the Tutsi in Rwanda had begun. With the location secure and reinforcements arriving, Theogene had a request for his command: Could he go to save his relatives nearby? When given permission, he disguised himself in a government army uniform and, with a few other soldiers, went to find his uncle. But his uncle refused to flee to safety without his neighbors. Read More
Friday, July 2, 2021 - 11:37am
Actor, director, filmmaker and advocate Yuval David has a weapon of choice he employs to attract audiences and disarm would-be haters: a positive embrace of his story and a persistent belief in humanity. Read More
Friday, June 25, 2021 - 9:26am
A group of 30 second-grade children in New York City took part in a Tour for Tolerance event earlier this month that featured a virtual read-along given by famed broadcaster and Holocaust survivor Dr. Ruth Westheimer. Delivered virtually to students at the Glenn Morris School (PS100) in Queens, New York, the program was a pilot initiative of Tour for Tolerance and USC Shoah Foundation. Read More
Thursday, June 24, 2021 - 11:14am
USC Shoah Foundation mourns the passing of Fritzie Fritzshall, president of the Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center, whose story of survival and will to share it has inspired thousands of people. She was 91. Always hopeful and optimistic, Fritzie’s understanding of where hate and intolerance can lead if left unchecked has driven her her whole life to educate and empower everyone she meets. She will be dearly missed. Read More
Monday, June 21, 2021 - 4:03pm
The Institute congratulates Lesley Stahl and her 60 Minutes team for winning a 2021 Gracie Award for their segment “Talking to the Past,” which focused on Dimensions in Testimony and featured live as well as virtual interviews with Holocaust survivors, including Pinchas Gutter, Eva Kor, Aaron Elster and Max Eisen. Read More
Monday, June 21, 2021 - 12:21pm

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.

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
We asked you to submit your stories to us. Each week in April, we offered a new theme: spaces/places, family, resilience and messages for the future, and we asked for your stories. Your contributions were remarkable. We received dozens upon dozens of responses from around the world — from Morocco to Argentina to Switzerland, Israel, Canada, Poland and across the United States. Some of you shared that you even had family members in our archive.
Friday, July 17, 2020 - 10:25am
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.

Our 2020 Annual Report is Available

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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.