Building for the future

Building for the future

Melbourne's Jewish Holocaust Centre hopes to raise $2 million as part of its capital appeal to renovate and rejuvenate the museum.

Shoah survivor and JHC guide Joe De Haan with former politician Philip
Dalidakis. Photo: Peter Haskin
Shoah survivor and JHC guide Joe De Haan with former politician Philip Dalidakis. Photo: Peter Haskin

THE Jewish Holocaust Centre (JHC) has launched its capital campaign with the aim of raising $2 million to renovate and rejuvenate the museum in order to create a world-class facility for future generations, and to keep survivors’ voices alive.

The JHC is currently well advanced with plans for its redevelopment with the sight set for a new modern building which envelops the original 1930s museum. Within it, the main priorities include an enlarged foyer to accommodate visiting groups more comfortably and two new museum displays. 

The core Holocaust museum display will be totally redesigned and enlarged; while a new Children’s Museum is being designed following the success of the award winning “Hide & Seek: Stories of Survival” program supported by Gandel Philanthropy. 

Award-winning author Morris Gleitzman is working with the JHC in designing this innovative exhibition space. 

Meanwhile, space for the virtual reality immersive survivor experience, two auditoriums, upgraded archive facilities, and a special exhibitions gallery have been flagged to enable the staging of special exhibitions during the year. 

Plans outlined include a contemplative garden space to house the Pillars of Witness installation and the eternal flame; an enlarged education facility with several learning spaces; an expanded library; and an enlarged memorial room.

JHC museum director Jayne Josem said, “The Jewish Holocaust Centre is a vital repository of the collective memory and memorabilia of the Melbourne survivor community. We need to share their stories with as many people as possible.

“The community entrusts us to do this and we take this responsibility seriously.”

The JHC currently attracts one in three Victorian secondary schools which represents over 23,000 students to its education programs each year. 

In addition, over 10,000 other visitors come to the museum.

“As a child of Holocaust survivors, I feel the need for Holocaust education very strongly,” Helen Mahemoff, JHC capital campaign co-chair and head of foundation, told The AJN.

“I believe it’s imperative we continue to teach the lessons from the Holocaust to future generations, so we do not forget our past.”

To contribute to the campaign, visit

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