Torn from home is the theme for Holocaust Memorial Day 2019.
I didn’t feel like I had a home after the genocide because everything was destroyed. I had no home at all. I had nothing.
Marie Chantal Uwamahoro, survivor of the Genocide in Rwanda
Torn from home encourages audiences to reflect on how the enforced loss of a safe place to call ‘home’ is part of the trauma faced by anyone experiencing persecution and genocide. ‘Home’ usually means a place of safety, comfort and security. On HMD 2019 we will reflect on what happens when individuals, families and communities are driven out of, or wrenched from their homes, because of persecution or the threat of genocide, alongside the continuing difficulties survivors face as they try to find and build new homes when the genocide is over.
HMD 2019 will include marking the 25th anniversary of the Genocide in Rwanda, which began in April 1994 and the 40th anniversary of the end of the Genocide in Cambodia, which ended in 1979. HMD activity organisers may particularly want to acknowledge this milestone anniversary, and reflect on how this theme impacts on members of the Rwandan and Cambodian communities.
Scope of the theme
- The meaning of home before genocide
a) What makes a home?
b) Fleeing from home before genocide
- Torn from home during genocide
a) Forced from home
b) Finding an alternative home
c) Making a home a refuge
- A home after genocide
a) Returning home
b) No home to return to
c) An empty home
d) Making others feel at home