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March of Remembrance and Hope Canada

March of Remembrance and Hope is an experiential program designed to teach university and college students of different religious and ethnic backgrounds about the dangers of hate and bigotry through the study of the Holocaust and other genocides, and to promote allyship among people of diverse cultures and faith backgrounds. Students learn about the importance of community and the beauty of learning from and with one another. MRH is run under the auspices of the Toronto Holocaust Museum, UJA Federation of Greater Toronto.

2024 Program Dates

Sunday, May 12, 2024 – Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Including orientation in Toronto and travel days. Arrival in Toronto on May 12th by 2pm.

Application deadline: February 21, 2024

 

If you have any questions about applying or the application process please contact mrh@thethm.org.

Cost

$4000 USD (all students are eligible for a subsidy)

Potential subsidies available:

Level 1 subsidized rate: $2,475 USD
Level 2 subsidized rate: $2,085 USD
Level 3 subsidized rate: $1,695 USD
Level 4 subsidized rate: $1,305 USD
Level 5 subsidized rate: $915 USD

 

Thanks to generous grants from Canadian foundations and individuals, all students receive a partial subsidy. Acceptance to the program is in no way based on ability to pay.

    • International round trip air transportation from Toronto to Berlin, returning Warsaw to Toronto
    • Land travel in Germany and Poland, including airport transfers for group to and from hotel, entrance fees to sites, and guides
    • Some meals (all breakfasts, some lunches and dinners)
    • Hotel accommodations based on shared rooms
    • Medical insurance for overseas travel (mandatory)
    • Round trip travel to/from Toronto. Limited financial assistance may be available
    • Tips for guides and drivers ($50 USD per person; USD bills required)
    • Visa to Poland, if required (Note: Canadian citizens do not require a visa)
    • Excess baggage charges if applicable (we encourage packing light! You will be carrying your own luggage in and out of hotels, onto the bus, etc.)
    • Some meals
    • Alcoholic or specially ordered beverages with meals, laundry charges, telephone and room service charges, and other items of a purely personal nature

    • Any deviations from the program group flights

Trip Highlights

An overview of some of the MRH itinerary

  • 10 days in the historic countries of Germany and Poland
  • Cities include Berlin, Warsaw, Lublin and Krakow
  • Guided walking tours of cities
  • Explore the diversity of prewar Jewish life and culture
  • Guided tours of concentration camps and other sites of atrocities including Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration and death camp
  • Expert led tours of memorials and museums including the Topography of Terror Museum, Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe and Museum, the Museum of the History of Polish Jews and more
  • Learn from experts and professionals in Holocaust studies and memory
  • Dialogue with locals and learn about contemporary Jewish life
  • Hear first person testimony from Holocaust survivors and others with lived experiences related to the Holocaust

Eligibility

    • Be a university or college student, over the age of 18, and enrolled at an accredited university or college.
    • In response to the challenging environment of rising antisemitism on university campuses across Canada, the following is a new requirement for participants to enhance the long-term impact of MRH. All participants must be returning to campus in the fall of 2024. (Certain exceptions can be made.) Upon their return, participants will collaborate with the campus organization Hillel (or other campus organizations where there is no Hillel) to plan an event for their networks, sharing insights and experiences from the transformative trip. This event will serve to educate others about the Holocaust, promote intercultural understanding, and share personal stories. This collaboration aims to apply the lessons learned during the March of Remembrance and Hope and contribute to creating a more inclusive campus environment.
    • Submit the names and email address of two references. One should be a faculty member at the university or college you attend, the other may be a faculty member or an individual who knows you in a supervisory position and can attest to your leadership and commitment through paid or volunteer work. They will be sent a link to an online confidential reference form.
    • Submit a 300 to 500 word essay on one of the four topics provided in application.
    • Possess a valid passport that expires no earlier than December 31, 2024. If you do not have a valid passport, you will be required to apply for one immediately upon acceptance to the program.
    • Make a commitment to participate in the pre-trip educational component, comprising readings, videos and webinars.
    • Upon acceptance to the program, enter into agreement with a travel agent and sign and abide by the Code of Conduct established by March of Remembrance and Hope.
    • Upon acceptance to the program, submit medical information relevant to this travel/study program.
Photo by: Vanessa Tignanelli Photography

Questions & inquires

mrh@thethm.org

“When a survivor of the Holocaust holds hands with a Rwandan student in Auschwitz, and when they dry each other tears and learn from one another, we know that Hitler and tyrants like him can be defeated.”

MRH 2001 Participant

Vision, approach and outcome

    1. To never again allow for the unchecked rise of the menace of anti-Semitism or any kind of racial discrimination directed by any individual or group in society against another to gain strength. Included in this goal is the teaching that all human beings are equal, precious and valued, and the diminution of the dignity of any member of the human family is a cardinal violation of all ethical teachings.
    2. To recognize and learn from the altruistic actions of the “righteous among the nations”, who teach us to never be a bystander in the face of oppression.
    3. To remember those who perished, to be a witness, thus denying Hitler a
      “posthumous victory”. The role of the survivor has been a key element in this goal.
    4. To pay tribute to the courage of those who survived the Holocaust, who rebuilt their lives despite the haunting memories of the past.
    5. To honor the heroic veterans of WWII who fought to liberate Europe from the hands of Nazi tyranny.
    6. To welcome opportunities to learn about participants’ different ethnicities and beliefs so that we may transcend our religious, political, and cultural boundaries in order to bear witness to the common humanity we all share.
    7. To inspire participants to commit to building a world free of oppression and intolerance, a world of freedom, democracy and justice, for all members of the human family. Related to this goal is to teach the message that, when
      we return to our communities, each of us has the ability to make a real and lasting difference in the world.
    8. The final goal is not so much to learn from or about history, but to enter into history. By visiting Germany and Poland, we are taking part in a commemorative act that declares that the memory of six million Jews and millions of other innocent victims—­Poles, Roma and Sinti, Jehovah’s Witnesses, homosexuals, the disabled and political prisoners ­ who were murdered during the Holocaust and WWII—has been marked and will never be forgotten.
  • March of Remembrance and Hope is built on an experiential education model and the belief that stepping into history alongside expert guides and fellow Canadian students committed to participating on this journey of discovery, is key to a profoundly transformative experience. Participants are expected to take part in a pre-trip educational plan that includes readings, learning modules, and webinars. The education plan helps prepare the group intellectually, contextually, and emotionally for the challenges and opportunities that will mark the journey to Germany and Poland.

  • Participation in the March of Remembrance and Hope marks the beginning of a lifelong journey. On their return home, students are challenged to speak out against intolerance and injustice; to refute the malevolence of Holocaust deniers; to contribute to a better world; to make a difference. Participants are encouraged to become involved in campus and community organizations that share the goals of the March of Remembrance and Hope. Year after year, our students attest to the fact that the March of Remembrance and Hope program is a transformative experience. It demands courage, emotional honesty and intellectual fortitude. In return you will be a part of the most passionate, consuming, fulfilling experience imaginable. You will emerge with a greater understanding of why we must continue to teach, to help individuals communicate the message of the simple yet elusive goal for all people – never again.

MRH's History

Our story

Photo Credit: Laina Brown Photography

The international MRH program was founded in 2001 by Dr. David Machlis of the United States and Eli Rubenstein of Canada, both of whom have worked extensively with the March of the Living program. Carla Wittes, Director of Program, was the first staff person and has remained an essential part of MRH since its inception. Connected by the belief that the Holocaust was not simply a Jewish issue, but rather a grave part of history that was of importance to all of humanity, they worked together to create a program that would provide an opportunity for students of all ethnic and faith backgrounds to learn about the significance of the Holocaust.

 

Since its inception, more than 600 Canadian students of many diverse religions, backgrounds and ethnicities have taken part in the March of Remembrance and Hope program, including but not limited to members of the Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim, Seventh Day Adventist, Baha’i, and Zoroastrian faith communities.

 

Additionally, MRH has been privileged to learn from participating members of the leadership delegation who bring their own lived experience of persecution to bear on the education experience. To date survivors of the Rwandan Genocide, Vietnamese Boat People, members of various First Nation communities, and African Canadians, have gifted the MRH community with their powerful personal experiences throughout the course of the trip.

 

MRH has a rich community of alumni who remain actively involved in their communities, working to spread the message of respect and empathy. Inspired by their MRH experience, alumni often emerge with a strengthen commitment to community volunteerism, campus inclusion initiatives, and a variety of projects that examine the importance of learning from people of difference and working with vulnerable populations. Two student organizations in Canada dedicated to teaching tolerance and combating genocide, Shout Canada and Stand Canada, were founded by students who participated in Marches to Poland. Many of the student leaders and active members of these two organizations are alumni of the March of Remembrance and Hope program.

 

On January 27, 2007, International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Ms. Marie Mirlande Noel, an African American student at the College of St. Elizabeth, and a graduate of the MRH program, addressed the United Nations about her experience on the March of Remembrance and Hope program.

 

MRH is sponsored on an annual basis in Canada by the Toronto Holocaust Museum, UJA Federation of Greater Toronto, after being run for several years by the Canadian Centre for Diversity.

Donate

Every donation helps our participants each year and keeps MRH running

Many of our students rely on subsidies to take part in the program. It’s people like you who make their participation possible. Every little bit helps and we thank you for your generous support.
Jenn left a mark on everyone on the trip. Even if many lost contact as the years passed, they still followed her career. Jenn’s light continued to shine in so many ways. She was a driving force behind Operation Inspiration. This light was the hope of the survivors, Judy Cohen and Pinchas Gutter, who accompanied us on our trip. They believed that WE could continue to shine a light on their experiences. That the group could fight back against those spreading hate and disinformation. That we would continue the legacy of “Never Forget”. From darkness comes light. While we mourn the loss of Jenn, this scholarship aims to keep her light shining. This scholarship will allow others to be the light.

MRH 2017 Cohort Reflections on Jenn Casey

Captain Jenn Casey Memorial Scholarship Fund

MRH Alumni have established the Captain Jenn Casey Memorial Scholarship Fund in loving memory of Jenn an MRH 2017 participant

Captain Jennifer Rose Casey, Canadian Forces Snowbirds Public Affairs Officer and MRH alumna, was killed in a tragic air crash in Kamloops on May 17, 2020. Canada mourned her death, and we, alumni and staff of MRH, felt a particularly personal sense of grief and loss. A scholarship fund has been established in her memory to provide assistance to future MRH participants.