Education Agenda NS-Injustice

On the initiative and with funding of the Federal Ministry of Finance (BMF), the EVZ Foundation launched a new project in June 2021: the Education Agenda NS-Injustice. Initial financial resources have been released by the German Bundestag for the project as part of the “Follow-up Responsibilities for Reparations to Victims of National Socialist Persecution” and were made available to the Foundation via the BMF.

Current Challenges and Needs

The critical examination of National Socialist injustice and its continuities and the historical-political educational work about this period will depend on forms conveyed by the media. Without the generation of survivors and with increasing temporal distance, knowledge of National Socialist history and the Holocaust is on the decrease. At the same time, there has been a worrying increase in antisemitism, antigypsyism and racism. Antisemitic, antigypsy and racially motivated acts of violence and attacks, such as the recent attacks in Hanau and Halle, are occurring with increasing frequency.

 

Our Approach

The Education Agenda NS-Injustice is intended to contribute to the current social and political challenges in historical-political education on National Socialist injustice in Germany and Europe. Historically aware, activating communication of the lessons learned from the National Socialist past and the visualization of experiences of those affected by persecution, are intended to reinforce democratic attitudes, and counteract antisemitism, antigypsyism, racism and LGBTIQ hostility.

The planned projects are intended to bring to light the fate of persecuted people and groups, with a special focus on those who have received less public attention so far. Be it
 

  • Jews, Roma and Sinti,
  • people persecuted because of their sexual orientation,
  • people with disabilities,
  • forced laborers,
  • stolen children,
  • people persecuted politically,
  • religiously and as “asocial”,
  • civilian victims of German occupation policy.


Or be it resistance fighters, helpers and rescuers during the time of National Socialism, the Holocaust and during World War II in Europe.

The history of Germany in the post-war period, especially with regard to coping with the consequences of the war, the processes of civic and political reappraisal of the genocides after the end of World War II in Germany (keyword: reparation policy) will also be examined.

First Phase

The project is designed as a multi-year program with four funding priorities: In the first phase in 2021, exemplary projects of nationwide significance and European dimension will initially be funded. Based on this, program lines will be developed in a planned second funding period to be implemented between 2022-2024.

Dr. Andrea Despot

In addition to young people, we focus on other target groups, which can be culture professionals or specific professional groups. Because our engagement with National Socialist crimes must not end when people leave school. We can contribute to a tol-erant and diverse society at every age and every phase of life.
Dr. Andrea Despot
Chairwoman of the Board of the Foundation EVZ

Funding Priorities

1 – Education in Cultural Spaces

Goal: To enable emotional, empathy-promoting and low-threshold access to the history of National Socialism and to the history of coming to terms with and reappraising the National Socialist era, as well as to highlight historical continuities and link the past and present, and to reach new target groups

a) by supporting cultural institutions in Germany. These develop cultural, multidimensional educational projects, in which an artistic and creative critical examination of persecution and the learning and understanding that can be derived from it takes place. This involves young people in different (urban) communities who have few or no family biographical connections to National Socialist history.

b) by funding (digital and/or hybrid) public exhibitions on the topic with a national and European appeal, which are intended to pick up on stories of persecution in German or European remembrance culture that have received less attention to date. The perspectives of survivors and their descendants are thereby included.

 

2 – Education in Digital Spaces

Goal: Remembrance 4.0 - Enable exemplary new digital tools and formats for contemporary Holocaust Education by the targeted funding of nationwide cooperation between historians, educators, and civic tech stakeholders. The aim is to reach increasingly tech-savvy target groups.

 

3 – Transfer

Goal: Enable knowledge transfer and intervention competencies to relevant professional groups in Germany in the form of qualification offers. These offers are understood as lifelong learning activities to enhance skills, knowledge and/or competences regarding personal, civic and/or job-related perspectives regarding to National Socialist injustice. They enable and empower students to recognize historically grounded contexts, to acquire relevant systematic historical knowledge and historical awareness, and to promote value-based action in the present.

 

4 – Europe

Goal: Promote collective remembrance of the pan-European dimension of National Socialist injustice. The collaborative projects in this area have a transnational and innovative focus and are intended to strengthen cohesion in Europe. The projects raise diversity awareness, anti-discriminatory attitudes and democratic competencies as well as European networking and cooperation in the field of historical-political education in Europe.

Annette Schavan

The MEMO study makes it clear that memory is a process, never a finished product. It is generational, educational and issues of origin that determine our memory – and also make it clear that dealing with Nazi injustice is part of lifelong learning.
Annette Schavan
Chair of the Board of Trustees of the EVZ Foundation and former Federal Minister of Education

Advisory Board

Project proposals are submitted to an international advisory board consisting of representatives of the Board of Trustees of the EVZ Foundation and the BMF.

BMin (ret.) Annette Schavan, Chairwoman of the Board of Trustees of the EVZ Foundation (Chairwoman)
Government Director Dr. Annika Wernecke, Federal Ministry of Finance
Monica Dugot, Plaintiff's Attorney USA, Member of the Board of Trustees of the EVZ Foundation
MdB Dietmar Nietan, Member of the Board of Trustees of the EVZ Foundation
Prof. Dr. Susanne Sophia Spiliotis, Foundation Initiative of German Business, Member of the Board of Trustees of the EVZ Foundation
Christoph Kübel, Foundation Initiative of German Business, Member of the Board of Trustees of the EVZ Foundation
Arie Zuckerman, Special Advisor to the Chairman of the Directorate of Yad Vashem, Member of the Board of Trustees of the EVZ Foundation

Structured dialogue

The program is accompanied - with the involvment of the BMF - by a structured, multilateral dialogue with relevant practitioners, various civil society stakeholders, experts, and representatives of victims of National Socialism, persecuted groups and their descendants.

 

The Projects of the Education Agenda NS-Injustice 2021

Digital sound worlds, a theater project with inclusive and diverse youth ensembles, 360° tours and much more.

Learn more

Videomessage from Katja Hessel

Videomessage

Katja Hessel on Education Agenda NS-Injustice

Katja Hessel, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry of Finance, speaks at the presentation of the Education Agenda NS-Injustice about Germany's continuing responsibility and the goals of the project.