The Whitehall Community Library is working with Whitehall School District students on a Holocaust project thanks to a $5000 grant given to them by Project Democracy.
"We decided to base our project on the Holocaust discussion group which has already taken place for over a year," said Jeannie Ferriss, Whitehall Community Library Director.
The Whitehall Community Library and Whitehall School District students are putting together the project. To be a part of the project, each participant has to sign a letter of commitment for the year, attend all nine monthly Book Discussion meetings and read an account of the Holocaust time period, serve as a member of one of the project committees, and participate in at least one of the projects.
Hope Shockley and Bo Chevront are the project coordinators.
"I’ve always kind of been interested in the Holocaust and stuff like that. My mom has read us books like when we were really little about the Holocaust. I have Jewish people in my family, like my great grandma was half-Jewish." said Shockley.
"I started coming to the Holocaust book discussion a few years ago and I really enjoyed it, got a lot out of it, and then Jennie asked me would you like to help coordinate our project and I said absolutely," said Cheuvront.
The project will be teen-led and is open to youth 14-17 years of age.
Projects will include a study of fake websites and how to authenticate the true information sources using the Stanford University method; a trip to the Holocaust Museum in Bozeman, guest speakers, and a Rescuer/Survivor fair where participants will learn about a real person and then tell their story to the public.
"The night of the fair, they will come dressed as that person with a storyboard illustrating their life and what happened to them so that the public can come in and interview them," said Ferriss.
Ferriss is excited about beginning the project.
"The focus is Holocaust education. How could this happen, how could something so horrific take place in, at that point, what was a very modern country and could it happen again," said Ferriss.
The first meeting is next month. There are five spots left for students to be a part of the project. The project will end in May of 2022.