There is kindness to be found in the darkest of places.

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I have done hundreds of blogs on WWII and the Holocaust and it often is difficult to see and read about the horrors inflicted on innocent lives.And at times I feel like giving up because these stories do leave emotional scars, but then sometimes I stumble across stories which lift my soul and give me the drive to go on.

The story of  Francine Christophe is one of such stories.

Born on 18th of August 1933, Francine Christophe was deported with her mother to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in 1944.

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Christophe and her mother were brought to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp when she was a young girl, and her mother took with her two small pieces of chocolate, telling Christophe she would save them for a day when they really felt hopeless. She thought the chocolate would help to give them the strength to carry on.

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But the day came unexpectedly, when another prisoner named Helene went into labor. Christophe’s mother asked her, if she would mind sharing her piece of chocolate with Helene. “Giving birth here will be hard,” Christophe says her mother told her. “She may die. If I give her the chocolate, it may help her.”

She agreed and Helene, with the help of a little piece of chocolate, was able to give birth.The baby didn’t cry, it never cried.Six months later, they would be freed from the camp,at that point the baby cried for the first time.

 

But the true reward for Christophe came just a few years ago, when at the urging of her daughter, she gave a lecture on how survivors would have coped differently if they had had the help of counsellors in their recovery.

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A woman came to the podium saying she was a psychiatrist living in Marseille, France. She said she had something to give to Christophe on stage.

The woman came up and placed a piece of chocolate in Christophe’s hand and said, “I am the baby.”

The baby didn’t cry but I did researching this story, but they were happy tears.

The interview with Francine Christophe was part of a documentary called “Human”

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Random Act of Kindness

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I enjoy going for walks aside from the health benefits it also  clears my head, On these walks I often take pictures of things that catch my eye.

This morning I walked up to the Limerick Gallery of art just to check if there was a new exhibition, but before I went in I took some pictures of the monuments outside of the gallery and a street and church nearby.

Then when I was about to enter the gallery, a city council worker who had been working in the vicinity, stopped me. He said he had seen me taking pictures and then he showed me  a picture book of Limerick city. It was a book with pictures of hidden architectural gems and a few post cards. The kind man then gave the book to me.

I was actually touched by this random act of kindness. I was a complete stranger to the man and yet he presented me with a gift. It is small deeds like that , that still make me believe that although many bad things happen on this earth there is still more good then bad. I thought it was quite poignant on the day it was in, the day when we remember the darkest era in the history of mankind.

I will share the pictures I took and also some pictures that are in the book. The first picture are mine.

 

Pictures from the book.

The post cards

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