Each year, Action Reconciliation Service for Peace offers study tours to Poland for all new volunteers. The study tours are open to all volunteers, who begin in September their voluntary service through Action Reconciliation Service for Peace. During the few-days-long projects, young people have an opportunity, together with other volunteers from ARSP, to be concerned with the history of national socialism and the role of particular concentration camps in the wider system.
The originally planned one-week study tours to Oświęcim and Lublin had to be cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In order to give the volunteers the opportunity to prepare for the volunteer service, two 4-day online seminars were offered (19-22 July and 26-29 July 2020).
The online seminars focused on the Holocaust and its consequences. In order to show the effects of the National Socialist crimes, especially the Holocaust, the first step was to get to know the country of Poland, especially Jewish life in Poland before and after the Holocaust, and then to deal with German occupation policy in Poland. The intensive study of the history and significance of the concentration and extermination camps Auschwitz and Majdanek was made possible for the participants, in addition to the study of selected aspects of the history of the historical sites, by getting to know an individual fate. The critical examination of Nazi perpetrators and how they were dealt with after 1945 was also a topic in one unit. In addition, the participants dealt with a place of remembrance that is connected to their direct living environment and which enabled them to commemorate together in virtual space by bringing them together in a remembrance map: https://tinyurl.com/yy88ytej
The online seminar was conducted via the virtual conference platform Zoom. The course of the online seminar was documented on the MURAL platform with the work results of the individual units. MURAL is a virtual whiteboard tool that enables the participants to work together at different locations at the same time.