2021 Annual Report


2021 Annual Report

Our educational programmes and products are designed to encourage young people to reflect on social developments, then and now, with a focus on prejudice, discrimination, racism and antisemitism. These programmes and products are always based on Anne Frank’s life story.

Report on Democratic Awareness in the Netherlands

The report Democratic Awareness in the Netherlands by the Verwey-Jonker Institute revealed that there is broad social support for our democratic state under the rule of law, but this support is not always unconditional. A significant number of Netherlanders feel that democracy can sometimes be pushed aside in order to address urgent problems. This opinion is found among supporters of all political parties.

Commissioned by the Anne Frank House, in 2019 and early 2020 the Verwey-Jonker Institute carried out research into receptiveness for illiberal and antidemocratic ideologies, and resilience against this, in the Netherlands. The report, which was published on 25 February, is the first report of a new longitudinal study.

‘The support that a segment of the Dutch population expresses for non-democratic forms of government derives from the desire to solve complex and urgent problems quickly and decisively. The fieldwork for this study was completed in early 2020, just before the corona pandemic broke out. We are curious, and also apprehensive, to see what the findings of the following study and the second report will be. It is important make people, and especially young people, aware of the enormous importance of the democratic state under the rule of law and its significance for a peaceful, equal society. This doesn’t just apply to the Netherlands: in many countries the free, democratic constitutional state is under increasing pressure.’

Anne Frank Journal 2021

This year the Anne Frank Journal was on the theme of photography. The photos of the Frank family make it possible to tell Anne’s story in pictorial form. Many photos of Nazi Germany, the Holocaust and the Second World War have also been preserved. Highly diverse photos, furthermore: from propaganda to illegal photos, made at the risk of the photographer’s own life.

In the journal a meaningful link is made with today. How do students look at photos in the media? What effect does that have on their identities and personal lives, both online and offline? We help them learn to think critically and creatively about media and image formation.

‘Let me be myself’ – outdoor version

A special ‘corona-proof’ outdoor version was made of the travelling exhibition 'Let me be myself’ – The life story of Anne Frank. The exhibition had its premiere from Monday 17 May to Friday 21 May between 10 AM and 3:30 PM on the Westermarkt in front of the Anne Frank House, which was still closed because of the corona crisis.

The exhibition depicts the life story of Anne Frank in the context of the time in which she lived, and also has five educational modules that explore the present-day significance of the history of Anne Frank. The exhibition has been travelling worldwide since 2015.

Tackling football-related racism

In the run-up to the Euro football championship, besides enjoyment of the game, the Anne Frank House called attention to football-related racism on 9 June. The Anne Frank House, in partnership with national and international football clubs, the Dutch football federation and government agencies, has been running educational projects to counter racist hate speech and antisemitic chants in and around football stadiums.

‘There is an increasing awareness of football-related racism, and a wide range of groups are joining hands to combat it. That’s a positive development. So let’s keep up the good work and together show the red card to racism inside and outside football stadiums.’

Fair Play workshops for young people and the Chants Project for football supporters, organised by the Anne Frank House, form a part of the action plan. In the Chants Project football supporters follow an intensive day programme to raise their awareness of racist actions on the terraces. A key element of the programme is supporters’ intense loyalty to their club and their city, with an emphasis on the club’s and the city’s history. Supporters immerse themselves in this history, and see the enormous damage caused by the Second World War and the Holocaust. They visit ‘name memorials’ and go to local addresses where people went into hiding from the Nazis. They meet Jewish fellow supporters with moving personal stories: people who share their love for the same club, and who they can identify with as football fans.

New online game – Kick-off: The ball’s at your feet

A look around amateur sports fields quickly shows that incidents of a discriminatory nature take place every weekend. Rocky Hehakaija, a former professional football player, member of the Amsterdam Sports Council and director of Favela Street, launched the new Fair Play workshop together with the Anne Frank House for young footballers at the GeuzenMiddenmeer football club in Amsterdam, including the new online game Kick-off: The ball’s at your feet.

The new online game takes place around a school football tournament and deals with everyday examples of discrimination. During the game the young people taking part make individual choices, but ultimately the majority decides. How will the majority of the team react? And what consequences does this have?

After the game the young people discuss the issues raised in small groups. Different forms of work help them think about their own and other people’s attitudes and choices. There are also opportunities to consider together how you as an individual, but also as a team, can act in situations in which you are confronted with discrimination.

Fair Play Workshop

Travelling exhibitions 

Since 1996, the international travelling exhibition Anne Frank - a history for today has been on display in at least 4,617 locations in 80 countries. The exhibition Let Me Be Myself - The life story of Anne Frank has been shown at 270 venues in 21 countries since 2015.

Despite the pandemic, because of which many schools and cultural centres were closed, over a hundred presentations of the Anne Frank exhibitions took place worldwide in 2021. The Anne Frank House trains young people to show their peers around the exhibition. The new guides learn about the content and background of the exhibition, how best to transmit the information, and how to address current social developments. This format, known as peer education, is highly successful in involving the young people visiting the exhibition.

In response to the corona measures the Anne Frank House developed a special open-air version of the travelling Anne Frank exhibition, which was used in the Netherlands, Colombia, France and Germany.

As part of a long-term project a special addition to the Anne Frank exhibition was presented in Colombia. Eight panels, curated by local partner organisations, explore the experiences of ordinary people during the armed conflict in Colombia, and are intended to contribute to the reconciliation process.

In the USA a permanent Anne Frank exhibition was opened in the Barringer House, part of the University of South Carolina. The American tour of the travelling exhibition was also coordinated from the Barringer House.

In 2021 the Anne Frank House organised - with the help of partners worldwide - 107 traveling exhibitions, spread over 18 countries. 65 guide training courses were given.


We have continued to reach teachers with our products and projects in 2021. We presented 112 online guest lessons in primary schools, and for the first time we created the digital lesson to accompany the Anne Frank Journal in LessonUp; a digital platform that is well known to many teachers. For primary school teachers we developed the training programme Teaching about Anne Frank and the Second World War.

We gave the training Teaching about the Holocaust six times (three physically and three online) to future primary and secondary school teachers, and we gave the training Responding to hate speech once to trainee teachers. For college lecturers we provided three teacher training programmes surrounding the new educational tool Open Door: an online game concerning dealing with differences.

Explainer Open door?!

Stories that Move – toolbox against discrimination is ideal for use in webinars, because it largely consists of online components. We gave a total of 20 webinars in 2021, in which teachers learned how they can use the toolbox in their teaching, online or ‘live’.

The teachers’ team, with teachers from primary, secondary and further education, came together four times in 2021. The ten teachers completed the annual programme and continue to be available as a sounding board.

Youth Team

The Anne Frank House Youth Team 2021 is made up of fifteen young people. The training programme consists of seven sessions: a five-day session with workshops, two physical meetings in Amsterdam and a certificate ceremony. The young people learn about the Second World War and the Holocaust, about prejudice and discrimination, and about holding a dialogue, responding to hate speech and organising a project. In small teams, the young people work on project plans: two YouTube series on dialogues between young people with differing opinions, a poster campaign with a teaching package on discrimination, a social media campaign on sharing personal stories and a journal made for and by young people.

There were also online or offline meetings with alumni, and these former members of the Youth Team also organised activities themselves. They gave tours of the outdoor Anne Frank exhibition, made a video on freedom and remembrance, designed educational materials for teachers and were guest speakers in training sessions. Some of the alumni were also involved in the activities and preparations for the Youth Team.


In 2021 the team leaders of the Anne Frank House police team came together to discuss the dilemmas around the themes of equal treatment, discrimination and diversity. There were also discussions about ‘fake news’, antisemitism in football and the protests against the corona measures. During the networking days the team leaders were equipped with knowledge and expertise to discuss the themes further within their own teams and regions, so becoming ambassadors for principles such as equality in police work and contributing to the mission of the Anne Frank House.

In the summer of 2021 seven police professionals took part in a three-day training on leading discussions. They built up knowledge and expertise on leading group discussions on sensitive themes such as discrimination, prejudice, antisemitism and racism. Within the framework of a peer-to-peer (professional-to-professional) approach, the Anne Frank House hopes that in future the trained discussion leaders can contribute to activities for police officers.

In 2021 film clips were shown on the Second World War. These short films transmit knowledge and facilitate group discussions on the lessons that can be learned from that period for the Dutch police. The aim is to increase historical awareness and to contribute to the moral resilience of police employees.