The Names, Not Numbers program, developed and created by MTA Director of Special Programs Mrs. Tova Fish-Rosenberg, transforms the teachings of the Holocaust by taking it beyond traditional classroom walls, and turning it into an interactive, creative, and empowering educational lesson.  Students participating in the program have the meaningful opportunity to learn about the Holocaust from those who experienced it, preserve the survivors’ stories for future generations, and form intergenerational friendships with their interview subjects.  This week, students began filming their interviews with survivors, including Mrs. Katherine Griesz, who was born in Budapest, Hungary in 1930.  Mrs. Griesz recalls her childhood as unbelievably privileged, her family was part of a well-off social circle and owned both summer and winter homes.  She was raised in a non-observant household and was Jewish, in her words, “by blood only”.  Her life changed on March 19, 1944, when Germany occupied Hungary for ten months before the war ended.  Mrs. Griesz and her family were pulled from their home and taken into three different ghettos.  Ultimately, they were saved by Raoul Wallenberg, a Swedish diplomat who saved thousands of Hungarian Jews from the Nazis.  She remained in Hungary for three years and was sent to study in Switzerland at the age of 18.  Mrs. Griesz left for Australia when she was 19, then moved to London, and finally to the US in 1966 after meeting her husband.  Mrs. Griesz’s interview will be shown later in the year when our student-edited interviews are screened at the Names, Not Numbers culminating event.



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