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SWT to support UK Holocaust Memorial Day 2021

20 January 2021 : Community

SWT is once again supporting the UK’s Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD), to commemorate victims of the Holocaust and subsequent genocides.
 
HMD is a national awareness day organised annually by the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust (HMDT), as a meaningful opportunity for people in the UK to come together and learn from genocide for a better future.
 
Due to the current restrictions, the event organisers will be live-streaming the national ceremony online from 7pm on Wednesday, 27 January.
 
‘Be the light in the darkness’ has been chosen as this year’s theme to evoke reflection on both the darkest periods in human history and the ways individuals and communities have resisted that darkness to ‘be the light’ before, during and after genocide.
 
Following the ceremony, the HMDT is encouraging households to ‘light the darkness’ by displaying a safely lit candle in their window as a symbolic rejection of prejudice and hatred, and to remember those who suffered.
 
In a show of support, SWT’s Chair, Cllr Hazel Prior-Sankey, along with her husband Revd Adrian Prior-Sankey, Lead Chaplain of Taunton Team Chaplaincy, will be hosting an online candle lighting tribute for residents to watch via the Council’s social media pages.
 
Hazel will commence by reading extracts from the Stockholm Declaration as a statement of the Council’s commitment to the shared principles.  She will then light a candle in remembrance at 8pm, followed by a prayer written by a Rabbi, read by Adrian.
 
Residents wishing to join Hazel and her husband in lighting a candle are encouraged to monitor the Council's Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages from 7:45pm and to have their candles at the ready.
 
The Chair of SWT, Cllr Hazel Prior-Sankey, said: “We’re proud to stand in solidarity with the nation to remember those who’ve endured genocide and to honour the survivors.  Together we can choose to be the light in the darkness, learn more about the past and take action to create a safer future.

“Our support for Holocaust Memorial Day 2021 signifies our intolerance for antisemitism, helping both us and our community to identify the types of actions that may be anti-Semitic so that these can be robustly challenged.”

Residents can also watch the national ceremony by registering via hmd.org.uk/uk-holocaust-memorial-day-2021-ceremony to receive a link in advance, or by following the hashtags #HolocaustMemorialDay and #LightTheDarkness via social media.
 
Households looking for ideas and activities to pay their own tributes can visit hmd.org.uk/take-part-in-holocaust-memorial-day/hmd-together.