Children with Special Needs in Israeli School Help Preserve Auschwitz Shoes

“Soul to Sole” Project initiated by International March of the Living, the Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum and the Neishlos Foundation

We are proud and excited to share that the students of the Rothman Kaduri School, an educational center for adolescents with autism in Israel, took an inspiring step in a unique effort to donate a significant amount to preserve the shoes of the children murdered in Auschwitz.

Over the school year, students collected dozens of pennies as part of their math lessons. On the most recent International Holocaust Day, the students and their teachers learned about the effort to save the children’s shoes initiated by the March of the Living, the Auschwitz Foundation and the Neishlos Foundation, and decided that everything they collected – would be donated to effort to save the hoes. Thanks to them, 40 pairs of children’s shoes who were murdered in Auschwitz were saved from disintegrating.

The school said: “The students were very excited to receive certificates of appreciation for their contribution from us and now we want to say loudly and proudly thank you to these wonderful student donors: Shahar Yaakobi, Liron Marsha, Daniel Ohana, Hadar Toran, Aviel Hadad, Ural Bernstein, Aviel Haded, Daniel Haimov and Amit Mizrachi. Special thanks to Michal Neilinger, the teacher of these wonderful children.”

Michal Neilinger: “I’ve been privileged to be their teacher for the last two years. I believe that everyone wants to be a part of something meaningful in this world and people with special needs have something to give to the world. The desire to help preserve the children’s shoes brought with it a lot of meaning and also a lot of anger over the murder, sparking comments like how can there be so much evil in the world? How did someone not do something and what will happen if it comes back? What will I do and who will protect me?”

Revital Yakin Krakowski, deputy CEO of the March of the Living organization: “The campaign to save the children’s shoes that were murdered in Auschwitz has touched many, in this country (Israel) and throughout the world, both adults and young people.

We were very pleased to receive the donation from the children of the Rothman School, who for a few months collected twenty thousand coins to make a meaningful donation that truly illustrates their emotional connection to the shoe preservation project. Their dedication and donation to this imitative deeply moved us.”