Frequently Asked Questions

Want to know more about becoming a friend?

We have compiled a list of some questions for you. If you have any questions outside of this please don’t hesitate to contact us.

1) Why was the Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission created?

The Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission (THGC) was authorized in 2009 by Texas Senate Bill 482 of the 81st legislative session. THGC’s powers and duties are defined therein. The commission is to imbue in individuals a sense of responsibility to uphold human value, especially in the face of genocidal travesty, while also recognizing the horrific acts, as well as the people throughout these atrocities that participated in the preservation of human sanctity.’

2) How are commissioners appointed?

15 public members appointed as follows:
(A)  Five public members appointed by the Governor;
(B)  Five public members appointed by the Lieutenant Governor; and
(C)  Five public members appointed by the Speaker of the House of
Representatives; and
Three ex officio members as follows:
(A)  The commissioner of education;
(B)  The commissioner of higher education; and
(C)  The executive director of the Texas Veterans Commission.
The Speaker of the House of Representatives shall designate a member of the House and the Lieutenant Governor shall designate a member of the Senate to advise the commission.

3) What is the mission of THGC?

The mission of the Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission is to promote awareness of the Holocaust and genocides and to educate and inspire our citizens in the prevention of future atrocities.  Among the Commission’s goals is to educate teachers and students to better understand the consequences of hatred, bigotry and apathy.  Our focus on students’ education is an investment in our future.

4) What educational initiatives has THGC accomplished?

The challenge that must be addressed is:  How can we expect the next generations to respond to genocide if they do not understand right from wrong? We can start by embracing the fact that through education or the realization acknowledged from atrocities, we can begin to move forward.

Genocide not only destroys a people, but also destroys what may have or could have been. Thus, THGC utilizes its website and corresponding agency websites to educate, promote existing programs, and new endeavors to provide a conduit for students to express their ideas as a lesson for action. Involving the student in a program initiative is a step towards obtaining that child’s commitment to a better future.

The Commission has:

Worked with the State Board of Education and the Texas Education Agency (TEA) to modify the Social Studies TEKS to include the discussion of the Holocaust and genocide
Developed a number of resources and lesson plans for classroom use
Has held Holocaust and genocide study workshops to fulfill the TEKS in every Educational Service Center (ESC) region in Texas
Launched a Holocaust educator’s module on the TEA’s Project Share website by digital means with remote access throughout the state
Preserved the oral testimonies of Texan veterans who helped liberate concentration camps, and have shared their histories with schools and the Library of Congress with teacher lesson plans posted on our website
Developed and hosted on our website the “Eight Stages of Genocide” with teacher lesson plans
Worked with the College Boards to have the Holocaust and genocide incorporated into the curriculums of AP US History, AP European History and AP World History
Partnered with the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to develop content for legislated mandated core curriculum perspectives (ethics) in higher education core required courses with web-based instruction module(s) posted on their website
What other programs does THGC offer?
Awarded grants to institutions creating programs that support the THGC mission
Encouraged the Texas Legislature to pass a resolution annually recognizing Genocide Awareness and Prevention Month, and commemorated it through annual student video contests
Utilized volunteers to review textbooks and compile educational resources
Traveled a Bosnian genocide exhibit throughout the state
Awarded educator grants to schools who do social or civic projects that demonstrate awareness of an injustice

5) When can I submit a proposal to be considered for a THGC program?

The THGC annually publishes on its website its requests for participation as follows:

Educator grant programs – August
Student video contest – October
Institution programs – October
Other volunteer programs – as needed
How can I participate in THGC activities?
The volunteer committee of THGC focuses on finding and utilizing volunteers and interns with different interests and expertise to assist the Commission in fulfilling its mission. The solicitation and use of volunteers to assist THGC with completion of its programs has been an enormous success. The Commission recognizes volunteers for outstanding service and the important support they provide.

All individuals, without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, or condition of disability, may apply for volunteer positions by submitting a completed volunteer application form at http://thgc.texas.gov/about/volunteer-committee

6) Does the THGC have a 501(c)(3) to help fund THGC activities?

The function of the Friends of the THGC is to assist with funding the programs and activities of THGC. The Friends of THGC, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation, develops private resources to assist THGC with its mission to ensure that resources are available to students, educators, and the general public regarding the Holocaust and other genocides.

The Friends of THGC was established in 2010 to solicit and accept gifts and grants from foundations, public or private sources to use in performing the THGC’s programs, activities and duties. Visit the Friends at https://www.friendsofthgc.org for more information on donating to THGC programs.

7) How can I participate in THGC activities?

The volunteer committee of THGC focuses on finding and utilizing volunteers and interns with different interests and expertise to assist the Commission in fulfilling its mission. The solicitation and use of volunteers to assist THGC with completion of its programs has been an enormous success. The Commission recognizes volunteers for outstanding service and the important support they provide.

All individuals, without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, or condition of disability, may apply for volunteer positions by submitting a completed volunteer application form at http://thgc.texas.gov/about/volunteer-committee

8) Does the THGC have a 501(c)(3) to help fund THGC activities?

The function of the Friends of the THGC is to assist with funding the programs and activities of THGC. The Friends of THGC, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation, develops private resources to assist THGC with its mission to ensure that resources are available to students, educators, and the general public regarding the Holocaust and other genocides.

The Friends of THGC was established in 2010 to solicit and accept gifts and grants from foundations, public or private sources to use in performing the THGC’s programs, activities and duties. Visit the Friends at https://www.friendsofthgc.org for more information on donating to THGC programs.