12:13pm Monday 28th January 2013
By Adam Binnie
An 83-year-old survivor of Auschwitz-Birkenau spoke to students and parents at a Bushey school, to commemorate the annual Holocaust Memorial Day.
Zigi Shipper, who was born in Poland and now lives in Bushey, described his experiences of life during the Second World War under Nazi German rule and his incarceration in concentration camps.
He has travelled around the country, talking to groups about tolerance and anti-racism, including the England football team before Euro 2012, which was held in Poland and Ukraine.
The Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD) event took place on Thursday evening (January 24) in Bushey Meads School, Coldharbour Lane, and featured primary and secondary school pupils from across Hertfordshire schools.
Pupils, teachers, parents and invited guests including county councillors, were invited to consider how to prevent hatred and discrimination by making connections with and between communities.
Mr Shipper said: "It was because of a bridge built between Holocaust survivors and the community in Britain that I am here to pass on my story today.
"In recognition of that, I continue to tell my story to young and old so that the experience of those who did not survive, as well as those who did, is not forgotten, and I will keep doing it as long as I live."
Holocaust Memorial Day is held annually on January 27, the anniversary of the liberation by the British Army of Auschwitz-Birkenau.
Lisa Kassapian, organiser of the event, said: "It was an amazing event and showed the pupils they had a role to play in their own communities.
"The pupils have all been talking about the account Zigi gave, they were utterly gripped by every word.
"He came with a lot of members of his family and spoke extremely eloquently."
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