Jeunes Citoyens / Young Citizens

Rachel Aurora, Ontario

Fair address: York District School Board Regional Fair

Project: Finding My Place in Canadian History: Uncovering My Past

My project consists of a video showcasing the lives of members of my family and the eye opening events that they faced in international societies as well as on Canadian soil. Throughout my story, I incorporate Historical Thinking Concepts into my work, which aid in the understanding of the contrasts in global society and culture throughout the Second World War era and the present.

What was the most interesting thing you learned about your topic?

The most interesting thing that I learned about my topic is that survival for my ancestors throughout WWII depended not on logic or merit, but often solely on luck. An example of this would be my great grandmother Ilse Obar's escape from certain death at the Kaiserwalkd concentration camp. In 1945, Nazi Officers at this camp grew fearsome of impending Allied attacks, and transferred inmates from their camp to Stutthof based on age. Ilse narrowly escaped death by being 25 years old.

What important lessons have you learned that you want to share with other Canadians?

From looking back into my family's past and noticing the connections made between people of conflicting descent - Jewish and Nazi German - I have learned that every person in the world is capable of overcoming political views to come together in peace. Knowing this, I am confident that current tensions can be resolved as well.

How would you compare your life today to the lives of those studied in your project?

My life is far more comfortable and safe than that of my ancestors'. Although world conflict continues today, I feel that I am quite lucky to live in a safe country with many opportunities available to me concerning my future.

  • Lyudmyla Matyas

    Great story! I was very touched! I wish you, Rachel, all the best in your life!
    16/06/2017 6:39:54 PM

  • Shivam Gupta

    Good Job Rachel, Loved it!
    13/06/2017 11:01:18 AM

  • Becca Smith

    Dear Rachel, The way you told this story was fascinating. You presented all of the threads and tied them together showing how it all ended up with you. Its beautifully presented. Bravo!
    13/06/2017 10:11:48 AM

  • Nelly Daley

    Great job Rachel!
    13/06/2017 6:51:00 AM

  • Tony Allen

    Hi Rachel, I wanted to compliment you on your Story, it was very well produced and was a great family history, quite similar to mine. Thanks for sharing, and best of luck in your future. Thanks, Tony
    12/06/2017 3:25:49 PM

  • Connie Meeke

    I listened with great interest to all that Rachel had to share about her family, their struggles and Canadian culture. I was fascinated by her presentation and applaud her hard work, intelligence and dedication.
    12/06/2017 2:45:03 PM

  • Judy Charney

    Rachel has shown profoundly how a family from diverse and conflicting backgrounds have created a child full of acceptance and love. Good work Rachel.
    12/06/2017 1:39:03 PM

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Bathurst, New Brunswick


Vancouver, British Columbia


Vancouver, British Columbia

Project partially funded by the Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage.
  • Canadian Heritage / Patrimoine Canadien
  • Government of Canada
  • HBC: Hudson's Bay Company
  • ecentricarts inc.