The Holocaust Education Resource Council (HERC), the local non-profit organization supporting Holocaust education in the Big Bend area, is holding a Holocaust Essay Contest, for Florida students in grades 4-12 from Leon, Wakulla, Taylor, Jefferson, Franklin, Madison and Gadsden counties.

The 2014 essay contest has three divisions, Elementary, Middle and High School. The 2014 essay contest prompt is "On this 75th anniversary of Kristallnacht, considered to be the beginning of the Holocaust, address the significant causes and effects of this event and why it is important for us to remember."

HERC will present contest winners with the following awards, High School cash awards of $500, $300, and $200; Middle School cash awards of $150, $100, and $75; and Elementary School gift cards for $75, $50, and $25.

According to 2014 Holocaust Essay Contest Chair Robyn Rachin, the contest has advanced the process of participating with-user friendly technology and is "going green,” for the first time having essays accepted online only. To enter, students should visit the HERC website at and follow the link to the 2014 essay contest. Students must adhere to the rules and directions listed on the HERC website in order to qualify.

Contest judges are community volunteers representing a variety of backgrounds. All judging is “blind” as judges do not receive any student information with the essay entries. HERC board members and teachers may not judge their own students or even essays within their division, although teachers may serve as judges.

Winners will be presented Sunday, April 27 at the HERC awards ceremony as part of the community Yom Hashoah Holocaust Day of Remembrance program at Congregation Shomrei Torah, 4858 Kerry Forest Parkway, Tallahassee at 3 p.m. Everyone is invited to attend.

For further information, visit or contact Rachin at or (850) 559-3223; or Barbara Goldstein at or (850) 443-9649. Deadline to enter is March 28.