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  • Wendell Maxey

The Staten Island Holocaust Center 2021 Year End Message: A Year of Challenges and Accomplishments



As the secular year comes to a close, we recall our accomplishments, we focus on goals for the new year, and we ask for your support of the Staten Island Holocaust Center (SIHC).


Despite the persistence of COVID-19 and the limitations imposed on our activities, our Board of Directors, Advisory Committees, and our community of friends are making significant progress toward the goals, mission, and vision of the SIHC.


We are committed to establishing a physical site where visitors can view Holocaust-related permanent and special exhibitions of art and artifacts - collections of these materials are well underway. Here, we will share survivors’ stories; honor WWII Vets from Staten Island who liberated Nazi camps; acknowledge the courage of righteous gentiles; and share the history of the Jewish Community on Staten Island. The former Officers’ Club at Fort Wadsworth presents a superb site for the SIHC, with a view overlooking the harbor and Statue of Liberty, icons of the immigrant experience. Our architect, Glen Cutrona and consultants will analyze the site’s feasibility, provide design documents as we launch a capital campaign to finance the renovations, and ultimately provide the construction documents, handle bids, and observe the work as the SIHC becomes a reality.

We have a created a bold program to facilitate education that will fight rising anti-Semitism on Staten Island at its core. We have contacted the leaders in every public, private, parochial, and charter school on Staten Island to introduce the SIHC and assist with Holocaust education resources and programs the educators can add to their curriculum.


We are developing Community Partners to share information about SIHC with their constituencies, to provide space while we await a permanent home, and to co-host programs such as display of artifacts with talks by survivors and historians, and staged readings of Holocaust-related plays; film and literature discussions, and the like.


We have established a new website (visit SIHCnyc.org) and social media channels on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn are building a presence, helping create relationships, and serving as a tremendous tool to educate our community.


We have already identified and researched over 100 potential grant and individual donors as we seek the necessary funding for this project. We offer donor recognition with naming and dedication options. Every contribution - time, expertise, and funding makes a difference!


Your participation in our endeavors is warmly and sincerely encouraged – each of us bears the responsibility to ensure the world will never forget and foster a world built upon mutual respect so that the atrocities of the past will not be repeated.


Now is the right time to include the Staten Island Holocaust Center (SIHC) in your year-end giving. It's a time of rising anti-Semitism. The SIHC mission is bold: Remember the Holocaust and inspire us all to build a world based on mutual respect. Give now to ensure the atrocities of our past will not be forgotten or repeated.


Be in touch – let’s chat about the meaningful work and giving opportunities, and let’s make 2022 a good and sweet year.


Rachel Borenstein (Staten Island Holocaust Center, President)

Philip S. Straniere (Staten Island Holocaust Center, Chair)


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