Honouring Survivors at Queen’s Park

For two decades, the Canadian Society for Yad Vashem (CSYV) in collaboration with the Premier of Ontario has organized an annual ceremony to pay tribute to the Holocaust survivors who rebuilt their lives in Ontario and contributed to the growth of the province.

During the ceremony, the Premier and several MPPs read survivor’s tributes and present the honourees with special certificates of recognition for their Outstanding Achievements and Contributions to the Province of Ontario.

The importance of the Ceremony is twofold: It pays tribute to the Holocaust survivors for their courage — Their stories demonstrate remarkable bravery, faith, and hope to overcome deprivations of the Holocaust and become contributing citizens of Ontario. Second, it provides insight on the Holocaust by giving us first-hand experiences of the Shoah. This allows us to grasp the trajectory of the events and the real truth behind the Holocaust. The Ceremony becomes more important every year as the number of survivors diminishes.

“I want to recognize the tremendous courage of the honourees, and to thank them for their strength in sharing their stories as survivors of the Holocaust and for giving a voice to those who perished in this unparalleled human tragedy. I would also like to acknowledge, with gratitude, the vital role they are playing in raising awareness of the need to continue to take a strong stand against all forms of hatred, bigotry and persecution.”

Ontario Premier Doug Ford During the 2019 ceremony.

“As the number of Holocaust survivors diminishes over time, it is a vital task to ensure that they and their first-hand experiences will never be forgotten.”

Galit BaramConsul General of Israel to Toronto and Western Canada

“Each of today’s honourees has demonstrated courage, strength, and resilience throughout their lives –as individuals who experienced the tremendous toll of the Holocaust and as they struggled to rebuild their lives here in Ontario. The five beautiful families who have joined us here today serve as both a legacy and a testament to these brave individuals who we will honour here today.”

Fran SonshineCSYV National Chair

“We must listen to the stories of Holocaust survivors and learn from them. Their stories of survival and post-war lives are exemplary. They guide us in our mission to educate Canadians, especially youth, about the lessons of the Holocaust. CSYV’s programs encourages students to examine basic moral issues. It teaches them that the study of the Holocaust is a fundamental subject for promoting tolerance, combatting prejudice and Antisemitism.”

Ester DrihamCSYV National Executive Director
Nominate Holocaust Survivor

To nominate a Holocaust Survivor for the 2020 Tribute, please submit the name and story of the Survivor whom you would like recognized to info@yadvashem.ca or contact us.