“Our commitment must be to remember the victims who perished, respect the survivors still with us, and reaffirm humanity's common aspiration for mutual understanding and justice.”
-- Declaration of the Stockholm International Forum on the Holocaust
A project by young journalists in Germany to tell the story of the Holocaust to young Snapchat users has been awarded a prestigious journalism award, the Henri Nannen Prize, in addition to the European Digital Media Award and the Axel Springer Prize.
The ‘Sachor Jetzt!’ project was developed by over a dozen trainee journalists of Axel Springer Academy in Berlin. Its aim is to communicate the history of the Holocaust to the target group of 14-to 16-year-old Snapchat users.
The project started in December 2016 when the group met with 94-year-old Holocaust survivor Margot Friedländer. ‘Sachor jetzt! Is a mix of Hebrew and German which translates as ‘Remember Now’. The aim of the initiative is to communicate the experiences of Shoah survivors to younger audiences. The journalism trainees spoke to Holocaust survivors, met their children and visited concentration camps in preparation for the Snapchat project.
They shared some of the moving stories on the popular app - only using pictures and videos and walking the fine line between providing serious information and the quick-fix nature of Snapchat. Since its launch, ‘Sachor jetzt!’ has provided a platform to Holocaust survivors and their descendants to tell their story, but also to present the sites where the Holocaust happened.
Although Snapchat content is usually deleted after a short time, the Henri Nannen Prize jury, which is comprised of chief editors of major German newspapers, highlighted the project’s potential to reach out to a group of young people who for the most part were beyond the reach of ‘traditional media’.
‘Sachor jetzt!’ content remains available on the project website even after being automatically deleted from Snapchat. There is also a dedicated Sachor app.