PUPILS at a Chichester school are marking Holocaust Memorial Day by wearing their own shoes today.
The idea came from Bishop Luffa School students Meerabai Kings, 16, and Claudia Aspinall Nessling, 17, who recently went on a visit to Auschwitz organised by the Holocaust Educational Trust.
Justin Barnett, head of humanities, explained: “Seeing the piles of shoes at Auschwitz, from victims of the gas chambers, was an especially powerful experience.
“Back in school, they wanted to do something to broaden awareness of the Holocaust and raise funds for the trust.
“As such, they are speaking to pupils in class about their experiences and getting some of them to record their thoughts about the Holocaust on luggage labels, to signify the many luggage labels that they saw on their visit.”
The pair also organised today’s Own Shoes Day to coincide with the international Holocaust Memorial Day, which marks the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi death camp.
“By wearing our own shoes on January 27, we acknowledge how shoes are a symbol of the identity of the wearer and help pupils to understand that each pair of shoes at Auschwitz belonged to an individual,” added Mr Barnett.
Pupils will each donate £1 to wear their own shoes, with money raised going to the Holocaust Educational Trust.
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