Human kindness in the midst of horror is a remarkable thing. Rena Finder experienced both the horrific and being on the receiving end of human kindness when Oskar Schindler saved her and her mother during the Holocaust.
Finder shared her experiences earlier this week at the Levin Jewish Community Center, and spoke words that resonate in today’s world: “Schindler was one of the first people to show the world that you don’t have to stand by and do nothing when injustice is being done. There is always something you can do. You may not save the whole world, but it can start with one step.”
Finder is also making sure that she just doesn’t stand by on injustices by sharing what she experienced and witnessed as a child
“I always try to tell my students the truth,” she said. “They are beautiful, and they are smart. They have the power to make decisions. When they see someone being bullied, don’t stand by and do nothing – get help. A bully is a coward who attacks somebody who is smaller.”
Finder said when people stand up to a bully, they “achieve a great victory that will make them feel better. Don’t be a bystander, be an upstander.”
We want to honor Finder for being an upstander with this week’s Grit Award.