The disastrous World War II began on September 1st 1939. The devastating Holocaust was in full swing around this time and only got worse soon after. This mortifying pogrom assassinated an overwhelming amount of people, injured so many others, and continually haunts the lives of the survivors. As terrible an event that this was, thankfully some were saved. Many youth escaped the destructiveness of war through the great Kindertransport.
The Kindertransport was the name given to the transporting of children from soon to be war infested locations to safe places where they would be taken care of. (Kindertransport, 1938-1940) It started in about 1938 when people began organizing escapes for the women and the elderly, but no one made any efforts to help the youth. Thankfully, a man by the name of Nicholas Winton felt compassion on the people and organized a successful plan to step in and provide salvation for the children.
The first Transport left from a destroyed Jewish orphanage in Berlin on December 1st and on December 2nd, 1938 arrived in Harwich, Great Britain. The first from Vienna left on the 10th of December. (Kindertransport, 1938-1940) During the first three months of the Kindertransport, the majority of the children chosen to ride came from Germany, then the emphasis later shifted to Austria. (The Kindertransport) After the train left, there weren’t any interruptions and the ride was very successful.
Due to the excessive amount of children per ride, there wasn’t much room for anything on the trains. There was little food and water, and what they had was rationed throughout the trip. Also, it was such a tight space that there was barley any room for beds or chairs.
As well as conditions on the train, there were conditions in order to ride as well. The children had to be younger than 18 years of age, and parents or guardians could not ride with them. Only a handful of infants took part in the Kindertransport program, and those who did were taken care of by the older children also boarding the train. The majority of the transports were for the children whose parents were in concentration camps or could no longer support them. (Kindertransport, 1938-1940)
Although the war and the Holocaust had a major effect on people’s lives, the Kindertransport did as well. The Jewish families feared for their children’s lives. If they stayed they were in danger, and if they left they were also in potential danger. This goes for the non-Jewish families as well. The Nazis showed no mercy on anyone who wasn’t German. The thought of the Kindertransport also worried the parents of the youth as well. The adults weren’t allowed on the trains therefore, if anything went...