The LIGHT Education Initiative – an acronym for “Leadership through Innovation in Genocide and Human rights Teaching” – seeks to inspire, prepare, and empower students for leadership roles in Holocaust, genocide, and human rights education, remembrance, and advocacy.
LIGHT is comprised of four main elements:
- LIGHT Centers in schools
- LIGHT Programming opportunities
- LIGHT Coordinator positions for teachers
- Participation in the LIGHT Network
LIGHT Centers are educational hubs where students plan, organize, and carry out LIGHT Programming, which includes a variety of unique educational opportunities designed to bridge the gap between education and action, counter the rise in antisemitism and hate speech, and help students nurture their “Beloved Community.” LIGHT Coordinators are pioneering educators who oversee LIGHT Centers, “coordinate” LIGHT Programming with students, and maintain a relationship with the LIGHT Network. Taken together, the LIGHT Network is a beloved community of sharing among students and teachers, schools, and local and national institutions, libraries, organizations, and businesses.
LIGHT connects K-12 students to community members of all ages through themes within human rights and genocide, like being an upstander, making responsible choices, social and environmental justice, kindness and love, and volunteerism and humility. The goal of LIGHT is to see the creation of LIGHT Centers in schools across the nation, to shape students into socially and globally responsible leaders through the study of human rights and past and present genocides, and to help schools create LIGHT Coordinator positions for teachers to oversee LIGHT Programming as part of the LIGHT Network.
LIGHT is organizationally supported by the Holocaust Center of Pittsburgh and fiscally sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh.