WATERTOWN — The Armenian National Committee of Eastern Massachusetts is hosting a commemorative event, entitled “Genocide Education in the 21st Century: Empowering the Next Generation to Lead from Boston to Burundi.” The event will be held at the Armenian Cultural and Educational Center (47 Nichols Avenue, Watertown), on Sunday, April 10 at 3 p.m. The event is open and accessible to the public.
As we approach the 107th and 71st anniversaries of the Armenian Genocide and Yom HaShoah, respectively, it is incumbent upon us to educate, empower and inspire the next generation to work towards the eradication of hate crimes. Marguerite Barankitse, the founder of the Maison Shalom and a 2016 Laureate of the Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity, will deliver the keynote address, entitled We are the Builders of Hope. Barankitse is a Human Rights activist, educator and eyewitness to atrocities, who courageously stood up against brutalities during the Burundian Civil War (1993-2005), the ongoing Burundi crisis, and the Rwandan Genocide.
A panel discussion on the S 2557 bill, An Act Concerning Genocide Education, will follow the keynote address. The panel will consist of Eric Cohen, Act for Sudan & Investors Against Genocide; Lerna Ekmekçioğlu, PhD, Department of History, MIT; Dikran Kaligian, PhD, Armenian National Committee of America; and Herman Purutyan, Armenian Assembly of America. Together, they will discuss the challenges associated with the passing of the bill and provide resources to teachers to help integrate human rights into their curricula and educate our youth on the need for their continued vigilance.