Tomi Reichental is a man who unfortunately has been through a lot in his life. As a young 9 year old boy he was imprisoned in the Bergen Belsen concentration camp. He lost 35 members of his family during the Holocaust but never lost his ability to show empathy to others. Anne Frank was a fellow prisoner of Tomi’s but sadly didn’t survive.
Moving to Ireland in 1959
Despite working and living in Ireland since 1959 Tomi has only started talking about his past in recent years. He has dedicated his life to visiting schools spreading his message of tolerance, empathy and compassion. His work has brought him to many countries around the world and he has had a number of documentaries made on his life.
The documentary “Condemned to Remember” was produced by the renowned film maker Gerry Gregg. It reflects on his life experiences during the Holocaust but also explores the very real possibility of such acts of hatred taking place in our world again.
Creating a legacy of empathy towards others
The team at “Inspiring You” was very moved by his story having met him during a visit to Galway. Tomi has talked to over 100,000 students in Ireland and we hope to spread his message to a greater audience.
Tomi’s interview with 9 year old Seán
Tomi was 9 when he was imprisoned and lost his childhood. 9 year old Seán met him for an interview and asked Tomi about his life, childhood and how we can work together to help prevent such evil acts happening again.
Seán got some great answers from Tomi on bullying, homelessness and racism. It made for a powerful interview. Sometimes a child’s insight adds a clearer perspective on the need for empathy and love in our world.
Your help is needed
In a world filled with “Fake news” and “trolls” we want people to engage in Tomi’s story of resilience and hope. Our concept is simple. We want people to be more empathetic to the experiences of others. This can be friends, family, classmates or people who have suffered in any way in the past or in present day.
What can you do ?
We want children to be creative and reflective. You can write a story, poem, song or make a short video, take a photo or design a piece of art inspired by the theme of empathy or Tomi’s story. You can spread Tomi’s message of hope, empathy and love in your classroom, home and community through your creativity and actions.
Your art and writing can also create a digital legacy for Tomi’s work by simply posting content online inspired by Tomi’s story using #InspiringTomi
Create a digital #InspiringTomi legacy
Why not help create a digital legacy for Tomi’s message and post your #InspiringTomi writing and art it on a website or social media platform belonging to you, a parent or guardian, school or group using #InspiringTomi?
You can email us through our “Contact Us” section and tell us where you have posted your #InspiringTomi content.
We would be delighted to share it on our website and on our social media. W
In the words of Anne Frank “What is done cannot be undone, but one can prevent it happening again.”
Together we can spread Tomi’s message and help it grow to a wider audience and help ensure that history doesn’t repeat itself.
In the words of Tomi, “We must never forget“
#InspiringTomi #IYIRL #CondemnedToRemember