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

When Sam Kadorian was a child, Ottoman soldiers would conduct drills in a field near his home in Mezre (modern-day Elazığ, Turkey), adjacent to the fortress town of Kharpert. Sam would stand close by, mimicking their drills. Read More
Wednesday, April 20, 2022 - 1:21pm
The Holocaust Memorial Resource and Education Center of Florida (HMREC) has unveiled architectural renderings of the new Holocaust Museum for Hope & Humanity in Orlando, Florida that will be the world’s first Holocaust museum designed around survivor and witness testimonies. USC Shoah Foundation serves as a content and creative partner in the development of the new museum, the first time the Institute has teamed with a Holocaust Museum to design and implement a ground-up and permanent museum-wide exhibition. Read More
Monday, April 18, 2022 - 11:50am
A powerful documentary that hinges on USC Shoah Foundation testimony raises difficult questions about how Hungary memorializes victims of the Nazi occupation and confronts its own role in wartime atrocities. Released last year, filmmaker Dániel Ács’ Monument to the Murderers recounts the controversy surrounding a monument erected in Budapest in 2005 to honor local victims of World War II. Read More
Saturday, April 16, 2022 - 8:00am

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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.

“You can’t just close your eyes and pretend that the history goes away,” says Mickey Shapiro the eldest son of two Holocaust survivors who just finished a four-year-long journey to create a film about his mother’s story. “I am stuck with this for life, but I think it makes me more motivated. When you hear a story like that from your parents, you want to make things better.”
Friday, June 5, 2020 - 7:06pm
The young woman stares at me as I wait to press play on the video. Her eyes are dark and her lips are pursed. You can see a bit of her thick black hair which is matted beneath an off-white, or perhaps a light-pink scarf. It is hard to tell the exact color in the shadowed room.
Monday, June 1, 2020 - 1:09pm
“I am ashamed to say this,” Ursula said to me. We were sitting in her lovely Los Angeles home in the middle of the day on a Saturday in February. All the lights in her house were off, but the blue skies outside graced her face, her 90-year-old wrinkles defined. “I was so stupid to believe that when Hitler died, that the world would come to the end.”
Tuesday, May 12, 2020 - 11:40am
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.