Witness and Remembrance: Historic Learning and Preservation at Auschwitz

Spend five days doing service work at Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camp and learn about the Holocaust through lectures, discussions and expert-led excursions to important sites.
Rating (5)
Program No. 16732RJ
13 days
Starts at
Flights start at

At a Glance

How best to remember one of the most unforgettable horrible chapters in human history? For Holocaust survivors, part of the answer is to preserve the memories of the genocide that killed six million European Jews — as well as Roma, people with disabilities, and others — so that the legacy of those who died will live on. Join expert lecturers for discussions of the historical circumstances and ideology that led to the rise of Nazism. Learn about Jewish life in Poland before the war, confront the evil of the concentration camps at Auschwitz, and help preserve memory through service projects.
Activity Level
Let's Go!
Walking most of the day, every day. Moderate walking on sidewalks, dirt and gravel paths; some short flights of stairs; and periods of standing. Service work is outdoors and includes activities such as raking, sweeping, and landscaping to help minimize the impact of more than 1 million annual visitors to Auschwitz.
Small Group
Small Group
Love to learn and explore in a small-group setting? These adventures offer small, personal experiences with groups of 10 to 24 participants.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Help to preserve the legacy of those who died at Auschwitz through historical landscape preservation projects at Auschwitz.
  • Visit key sites in Berlin, including the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe and the Wannsee Conference Mansion, where SS leaders discussed the “Final Solution.”
  • Learn about Jewish life before and after the war through meetings with members of the Jewish community.

General Notes

Your service will be both intellectual and physical, as you bear witness to the reality of what happened and preserve memory through historical landscape preservation at Auschwitz. By performing these tasks with care and reverence for those who died, you provide a living, contemplative witness to history. Due to the nature of this program, listening devices are not available.
Featured Expert
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Matthias Hass
Dr. Matthias Hass is a political scientist and expert in the historical foundations of politics with a degree from the Free University of Berlin. He previously was the director of the U.S. program Action Reconciliation Service for Peace in Philadelphia, and he is experienced in organizing international educational programs. Dr. Hass is the author of “The Politics of Memory in Germany, Israel and the United States of America." He currently works part time at the House of the Wannsee Conference Memorial Site and Education Center.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

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Matthias Hass
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