Austrian Holocaust Memorial Service

In 1992, the Austrian Holocaust Memorial Service (AHMS) program was recognized by the Austrian government as an alternative to both mandatory military service and domestic civilian service. There are three supporting associations that offer placements at Holocaust memorials and institutions all over the world: The Verein GEDENKDIENST, the Verein Never Forget and the Austrian Service Abroad. All three associations are committed to counter the art of forgetting the history of the Holocaust era and are an integral part of Holocaust Education in Austria.


The association GEDENKDIENST was launched in 1992. Participants of the program have the possibility to apply for one of the eighteen partner organizations in Europe, the U.S., Israel and South America including the Leo Baeck Institute in New York, The United States Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C. and the Anita Müller Cohen Elternheim in Tel Aviv. In addition to sending young Austrians abroad, the program also organizes excursions to Holocaust memorials all over Europe and hosts conferences on different historical topics.

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Never Forget

In 1994, the association Never Forget was established providing students with the opportunity to serve at one of nineteen memorial sites in Germany and Poland. The association also takes an active part in youth work against forgetting and is involved in the organization of the Hermann Langbein Symposium – ideology and reality of National Socialism, an annual nationwide in-service teacher training seminar.

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Austrian Service Abroad

In 1998, the Austrian Service Abroad program was founded. Partner organizations of the Austrian Service Abroad include, among others, the representations of the American Jewish Committee and the Anti-Defamation League in New York, the Tampa Bay Holocaust Memorial Museum and Educational Center in Florida, the Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center, the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust and the Virginia Holocaust Museum in Richmond. The Austrian Service Abroad offers three different types of Zivildienst-substitutes: Austrian Holocaust Memorial Service, Austrian Social Service and Austrian Peace Service.

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