David Goudsmit


David Goudsmit tells of his mother Betty Oudkerk, who, as a Jewish child care worker, resisted by smuggling nearly 600 Jewish children out of the heart of Amsterdam under the Nazi regime.

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David Goudsmit

  • concentration camp

  • hiding

  • resistance

  • Duration: 60 minutes
  • Region: Noord-Holland
  • Compensation: € 45,00 (including € 10,00 discount private donation)
  • Travel expenses: € 0,29 p/k
  • Institutions: to be further agreed upon

Every day Betty Oudkerk takes a walk in the neighborhood. She takes five, six children with her. On her hand a baby carriage with a doll and a real baby in it. On the face of it, it looked like 10 children coming out, but she smuggles out half. Betty works in the nursery opposite the Hollandsche Schouwburg as a child care worker under the watchful eye of the Nazis.

But the most difficult part of her work takes place in that Schouwburg itself. There, as an 18-year-old girl, she must convince countless parents to give up their own child. "We would really like to help your child. We don't have a good feeling about what will happen in Eastern Europe. We want to take the children to a safe place with people in the province," she would say. Most parents have doubts. But sometimes Betty manages to convince parents.

Through her charm and powers of persuasion she herself managed to avoid deportation to the Westerbork transit camp and went into hiding. But this does not apply to the rest of her family, who are murdered in Auschwitz.

In his guest lesson, David links to current social developments in order to unravel, together with the students, the similarities and differences between the past and the present.

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