Holocaust Survivors

Holocaust survivors are people who survived the persecution and attempted annihilation of the Jewish people by Nazi Germany and its allies in Europe and west Asia during the Holocaust both before and during World War II, from the rise of the Nazi Party to power in Germany in 1933 until the defeat of Nazi Germany in 1945. More broadly speaking, the term includes anyone who was discriminated against, displaced or persecuted as a result of the policies and actions of the Nazis and their allies and, in addition to Jews who were uniquely targeted for complete annihilation, it includes those who were persecuted as a result of the Nazi's racial theories, such as the Romani people and Slavs, along with others who were seen as "undesirables" such as homosexuals, or for political reasons, such as Jehovah's Witnesses and Communists.

Survivors of the Holocaust include those persecuted civilians who were still alive when the concentration camps were liberated at the end of the war, or those who had either survived as partisans or been hidden with the assistance of non-Jews, or had escaped to territories beyond the control of the Nazis before the Final Solution was implemented.

At the end of the war, the immediate issues which faced Holocaust survivors were physical and emotional recovery from the starvation, abuse and suffering which they had experienced; the need to search for their relatives and reunite with them if any of them were still alive; rebuild their lives by returning to their former homes, or more often, by immigrating to new and safer locations because their homes and communities had been destroyed or because they were endangered by renewed acts of antisemitic violence.

After the initial and immediate needs of Holocaust survivors were addressed, additional issues came to the forefront. These included social welfare and psychological care, reparations and restitution for the persecution, slave labor and property losses which they had suffered, the restoration of looted books, works of art and other stolen property to their rightful owners, the collection of witness and survivor testimonies, the memorialization of murdered family members and destroyed communities, and care for disabled and aging survivors

(Taken from Wikipedia)


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