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Council invites members of the public to attend Holocaust Memorial event

5 January 2017

Bridgend County Borough Council will be marking Holocaust Memorial Day 2017 with a public event to remember the victims of the Nazi persecution and subsequent genocides.

In partnership with Bridgend College, the annual commemoration will be held in the Sony Theatre on Friday 20 January at 10.30am, and will remember the millions who have been murdered in the Holocaust and the genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.

For the first time in several years, members of the general public are being provided with the opportunity to attend the FREE commemorative event. In total there are 100 seats available, which are being offered on a first come, first served basis, and will need to be pre-booked.

This year’s Holocaust Memorial Day theme is ‘How can life go on?’ asking people across the world to think about what happens after genocide and of our own responsibilities in the wake of such a crime.

Bridgend County Borough Council’s special guest will be Antoinette Mushimiyimana, a survivor of the 1994 Rwandan genocide, where approximately one million Tutsus and moderate Hutus were murdered in just 100 days.

Aged only eleven years old when the genocide took place, Antoinette will talk about how life can go on. Today, she is an active advocate of reconciliation and justice - her focus being on creating peaceful environments in every society.

The traditional seven statements of commitment will be read out, plus a candle of remembrance will be lit by the Mayor of Bridgend County Borough Council, Councillor Reg Jenkins.

Community representatives will read poignant poems, plus the life of Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel who sadly passed away earlier this year aged 87, will be explored.

This year, students from Bridgend College will compère the ceremony, as well as provide a special performance to close the event.

Invited guests to represent a wide cross-section of the community will include the police, religious and community groups, politicians, schools and college students.

Bridgend County Borough Council’s Leader, Councillor Huw David, said: “Marking Holocaust Memorial Day is extremely important to the council, as we commemorate victims, honour survivors and commit to tackling prejudice, discrimination and racism that exists in the present day.

“This year we have decided to allocate a certain number of seats to members of the public, recognising that many people have a connection to the Holocaust, or at least World War Two, and therefore may have an interested in attending. We also place great importance of people learning about the subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Bosnia, Rwanda and Darfur, so we are extremely fortunate to have secured Rwandan survivor, Antoinette Mushimiyina.”

This FREE event is being held at the Sony Theatre, Bridgend College on Friday 20 January, 10.30am. Parking for attendees is not available at the main college campus so parking in the town centre car parks is advised. However, if you have any accessibility issues then please provide this information when booking on to the event.

If you are interested in attending the event, please pre-book your space/s by phoning (01656) 643499 or emailing jenny.owen@bridgend.gov.uk by Monday 16 January. For more information about the Holocaust visit www.hmd.org.uk

Last Updated: 06/01/2017
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