Genocide Awareness and Prevention Month is held each April to honor the victims of genocide. This toolkit has background information, case studies, documentaries and video testimonies of survivors, and other resources to help students and teachers genocide and what can be done to stop it from happening again.
Genocide: Any of the following acts committed with the intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group:
- killing members of the group;
- causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
- deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
- imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
- forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.
General Resources and Background Information
Documentary: The Last Survivor
Runtime: 22 minutes 39 seconds (Educational Version)
View the Website & Trailer
View the Study Guide
Synopsis: Following the lives of survivors of four different genocides and mass atrocities – The Holocaust, Rwanda, Darfur, and Congo – The Last Survivor presents a unique opportunity to learn from the lessons and mistakes of our past in order to have a lasting social impact on how we act collectively in the face of similar issues today.
Documentary: Worse Than War
Runtime: 1 hour 54 mins
Synopsis: This PBS documentary follows Harvard University professor, Daniel Jonah Goldhagen, as he speaks with victims, perpetrators, witnesses, politicians, diplomats, historians, humanitarian aid workers, and journalists, all with the purpose of explaining and understanding the critical features of genocide and how to finally stop it.
Video: Elie Wiesel Dies at 87
Runtime: 2 minutes 28 seconds
Synopsis: Elie, Wiesel, Holocaust survivor and human rights activists, passed away at 87 on July 3, 2016. Wiesel, through his books and lectures, bore witness for the millions of Holocaust victims, dedicating his life to the acknowledgement and prevention of genocide. His words serve as a reminder of everyone’s responsibility to protect human rights and dignity.
I believe firmly and profoundly that anyone who listens to a witness, becomes a witness. So, those who hear us, those who read us, and those who learn something from us, they will continue to bear witness for us. -Elie Wiesel
Article: The Pyramid of Hate demonstrates that the hate of genocide is built upon the acceptance of behaviors described in the lower levels of the pyramid.
Lesson Plan: Confronting Genocide: Never Again? from the Choices Program at Brown University
Suggested books and films on genocide from Orange County for Darfur
Case Study Examples of Major 20th and 21st Century Genocides
Past STF Genocide Awareness and Prevention Month Activities:
- Genocide Awareness Surveys
- Yellow ribbons – Talk to your STF intern about purchasing
- Screen “The Last Survivor” in classrooms/assembly/activities period/etc. (See above for additional resources. Talk to your STF intern for a list of additional films.)
- Use above genocide case studies to do classroom presentations/assembly/activities period/etc.
- Genocide Memorial Service
- Table at lunch
- PA/all-school announcements (including Monday Morning Meetings, Town Hall, etc.)
- Guest speakers – Talk to your STF intern for suggestions.