HHREC to Hold Dedication Ceremony at Garden of Remembrance for Planting Sapling From Anne Frank’s Tree in Amsterdam

The Holocaust & Human Rights Education Center will hold a dedication ceremony on Tuesday, June 11th at the Garden of Remembrance in White Plains, NY for the planting of a sapling grown from a tree referenced in Anne Frank’s Diary. The ceremony will begin at 12:00pm noon, and will include remarks by Westchester County Executive George Latimer and Anne Frank Center USA CEO Dr. Lauren Bairnsfather. The event is free and it is open to the public.     

HHREC was chosen to receive the plant by the Anne Frank Center USA, an organization honoring the legacy of Anne Frank. Other locations receiving a sapling are: Anne Frank LA, Los Angeles, CA; College of Saint Mary, Omaha, NB; Community Day School, Pittsburgh, PA; Gratz College, Melrose Park, PA; and Raritan Valley Community College, Branchburg, NJ.

“We are truly honored and grateful for being selected to receive a sapling from Anne Frank’s beloved chestnut tree.” HHREC Executive Director Millie Jasper said. “It is a privilege to be entrusted with this living memorial, and we look forward to sharing it with our community at the Garden of Remembrance as an eternal symbol of courage, resilience and hope.”

Anne Frank Center USA will plant saplings at key locations for each recipient in the spring of 2024, with plans to launch an extension of the program, the Anne Frank Garden Initiative, in 2025. Each sapling will become an integral fixture of the location where it grows and thrives.

With each sapling planted, Anne Frank Center USA is sharing Anne Frank’s love of nature with organizations across its coalition that have a common commitment to honoring Anne Frank’s memory through education, free expression, and belief in humanity.

The Tree in Anne’s Diary

From her only window to the outside world, Anne Frank could see the sky, birds, and a majestic chestnut tree. “As long as this exists,” she wrote in her diary, “how can I be sad?” Anne Frank wrote about her beloved chestnut tree in three separate diary entries in 1944, marking the changing of the seasons as she and others hid from the Nazis.

Project History

The Sapling Project began in 2009 with the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam’s efforts to preserve the original chestnut tree by gathering and germinating chestnuts and donating the saplings to organizations dedicated to Anne Frank’s memory. Despite efforts to strengthen the original chestnut tree, the aged, diseased tree toppled in a windstorm in 2010. It was one of the oldest chestnut trees in Amsterdam.

Over the last 10 years, Anne Frank Center USA has awarded saplings to sites across the United States, including the U.S. Capitol, the United Nations Headquarters, and others. Taken together, these trees form a living memorial with branches reaching from coast to coast.

About Anne Frank Center USA
The Anne Frank Center USA traces its roots to the efforts of Otto Frank in the 1950s to raise funds to support the restoration of Anne Frank House in Amsterdam. He established the Anne Frank Foundation in New York as a fundraising organization dedicated to this purpose.

The Anne Frank Foundation evolved into the Anne Frank Center USA, securing official 501(c)(3) nonprofit status in New York in 1977. AFC USA, which is still based in New York, functions as a decentralized organization. This makes it possible for the organization to remain nimble and responsive in a rapidly changing world. Over the past year, programs of AFC USA have reached hundreds of thousands of students in twenty-two states and the District of Columbia.

About The Holocaust & Human Rights Education Center

The Holocaust & Human Rights Education Center (HHREC) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in White Plains New York that serves schools, synagogues, colleges, churches and civic centers in Westchester and the greater Hudson Valley area. The HHREC Mission is to enhance the teaching and learning of the lessons of the Holocaust and the right of all people to be treated with dignity and respect. HHREC works with teachers and students to help schools fulfill the New York State mandate that the Holocaust and other human rights abuses be included in their curriculum. Since 1994, the HHREC has brought the lessons of the Holocaust, genocide and human rights violations to more than 3,000 teachers, and through them to thousands of students. For more information visit www.hhrecny.org call 914.696.0738 email info@hhrecny.org