Jewish Family & Community Services (JFCS) commemorated International Holocaust Remembrance Day on Jan. 27 with a special event offering virtual tours of the Frisch Family Holocaust Memorial Gallery. The dynamic webinars provided a creative and COVID-safe way to mark this year’s remembrance and help educate the community during the pandemic.

Not only have the videos been viewed a collective 1,600 times, but the tours also garnered extensive media coverage from local print, television and radio news programs. JFCS CEO Colleen Rodriguez provided the introduction for each of the two virtual tours, and the gallery’s guest curator, Hope McMath, walked attendees through the current exhibit – Spots of Light: To Be a Woman in the Holocaust.

A highlight of the event was a pair of interactive conversations with Morris Bendit, a local Holocaust survivor, and speakers from the newly introduced, “Memories of the Holocaust: Sharing Family Stories.” Sharing Family Stories is a program established by JFCS and facilitated by McMath. Through the program, nine children of Holocaust survivors have been holding workshops once a week on how to tell family stories. The workshops have been held in schools, at community groups and at Mayo Clinic.

“Almost daily we meet people who haven’t heard of the Holocaust and don’t understand what happened during that period in history,” Rodriguez said. “And so, as we build relationships and come to know our survivors, it’s important that people know them, hear their stories, hear what happened. It was a horrific time in our history, and we need to make sure that doesn’t happen again.”

Donors including Florida Blue, The Dr. Larry and Kathy Kanter Art Fund, and the Frisch Family helped make the virtual remembrance event possible this year.

To view the webinars please visit:

10 AM:

7 PM:

For more information, or to request a speaker, please visit