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March of the Living

March of the Living is an international educational program that brings Jewish teens from all over the world to Poland on Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Memorial Day) to march from Auschwitz to Birkenau, the largest concentration camp complex built during World War II. Teens then travel to Israel to observe Yom HaZikaron (Israel Memorial Day) and Yom Ha'Atzmaut (Israel Independence Day).

The goal of the March of the Living is for these young people to learn the lessons of the Holocaust and to lead the Jewish people into the future vowing Never Again.

Dates, Deadlines, Process, and Requirements

Dates for the March of the Living 2015: April 12 – 26, 2015. Applications available by request: Marcia Tatz Wollner, 858.362.1174 or

March of the Living is open to students currently in grades 11 and 12. This program requires emotional maturity due to the subject matter. Participation in the March of the Living educational seminar is required.

There are five components of the application process:
• General application.
• Medical forms.
• Essay detailing why you want participate in March of the Living.
• Letters of recommendation written by a teacher, principal, Rabbi, high school counselor or youth advisor.
• Personal interview.

Isn't this a really depressing trip? We have found that visiting sites in Poland, while filled with emotion, is also quite uplifting. There are thousands of Jewish teens from all over the world experiencing it together. Additionally, there is a mental health professional with the group at all times. The Israel portion of the trip is powerful and inspiring, and students come away from the March of the Living knowing they have experienced a life-changing event.

Financial Aid

An across-the-board subsidy will be available to all San Diego participants through the March of the Living Philanthropic Fund. Needs-based scholarships are available through the March of the Living Philanthropic Fund. In 2014 and 2015, needs- based scholarships have generously been provided by the Jewish Federation’s Israel Travel Scholarship program.

Info about the Lili Bialar z"l Memorial March of the Living Scholarship >

Religious Practices and Dietary Accommodations

The program is set up to accommodate the religious needs of all the students. All food in both Poland and Israel is certified kosher. Other special dietary needs may be difficult to accommodate, especially in Poland.


Security is of the highest level in both Poland and Israel. Security in Poland is coordinated jointly by the Polish and Israeli governments. Security in Israel is coordinated by the Israeli government.


A doctor, a mental health professional, educators, a Rabbi, and a Holocaust survivor accompany the students.

Birthright Israel Eligibility

Students who participate in the March are still eligible for the Birthright Israel program. March of the Living spends only seven days in Israel, so teens can participate in both programs.

Excusal From School

Contact the Lawrence Family Jewish Community Center for a letter that details the March of the Living experience that you can provide to your counselor. If they have further questions, they can contact Marcia Tatz Wollner, 858.362.1174.

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