First Museum Dedicated to Testimony
An Unprecedented Partnership with Orlando Holocaust Museum for Hope & Humanity
The Holocaust Memorial Resource & Education Center of Florida has partnered with USC Shoah Foundation to be a content and creative partner in the development of the new Holocaust museum to be located in downtown Orlando. This marks the first time USC Shoah Foundation has teamed with a Holocaust museum as they design, develop, and implement a ground-up and permanent museum-wide exhibition.
“For the first time, the eyewitness accounts of the survivors will form the beating heart of a museum dedicated to sharing their stories,” said Finci-Viterbi Executive Director Stephen Smith. “We are excited to work with The Holocaust Memorial Resource & Education Center of Florida to conceptualize groundbreaking experiences that inspire visitors living in and visiting Orlando for years to come. A recent study shows experiencing the stories of witnesses and survivors is one of the most effective ways to educate about the Holocaust.”
The Holocaust Center announced in January 2018 that it would be establishing its new museum in downtown Orlando, expanding its space from its current 7,000 square feet to an estimated 40,000 square feet.
“This is an incredibly smart, powerful and prestigious partnership that benefits from the expertise, experience and shared vision of USC Shoah Foundation,” said Pamela Kancher, executive director of The Holocaust Memorial Resource & Education Center of Florida. “Their expertise working and connecting with millions of students, teachers, and scholars worldwide elevates the impact of this project.”
The new museum will include innovative and interactive exhibits using existing and in development exhibits from by USC Shoah Foundation, including Dimensions in Testimony, recently profiled on CBS News’ 60 Minutes.
“This creative collaboration with USC Shoah Foundation reflects our common commitment to integrating testimony and storytelling into the heart of our new museum and programs,” explained Kancher. “It is a significant and long-term partnership intended to ensure that stories of those who survived the Holocaust are accessible and continue to inspire students, and all of our visitors, to be more empathetic, stand up to bullying and demonstrate a greater sense of social responsibility.”
“Orlando has shown itself to be a community that cares about human rights and justice, which is why building this new museum and welcoming the USC Shoah Foundation partnership is both important and appropriate,” said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer. “Our city will now play an even greater role in righting the wrongs of the past and contributing to a kinder world.”
Orange County Mayor Jerry L. Demings stated, “This partnership will continue to teach important lessons from history and in ways that engage and remain memorable. That’s how we change the future.”