Hamden Hall Country Day School

Educating students in PreSchool through Grade 12

Powerful Message of Hope Coming to Hamden Hall

An unexpected friendship between a Sikh and a former skinhead makes for a powerful story that will be shared publicly at an upcoming presentation co-hosted by Hamden Hall and ADL Connecticut.

“Champions for Change” features Pardeep Kaleka and Arno Michaelis, both of whom will be on Hamden Hall’s stage Wednesday, May 29, at 7 p.m. The two men now share a mutual desire to fight hate and make a difference following a hate crime that compelled them to join forces.

“We hope that listeners can take away the message of hope and healing. Arno and I are fortunate to collaborate with the Anti-Defamation League over the years as our work intersects a plethora of issues from race relations to mental health,” said Pardeep Kaleka.

Kaleka and Michaelis are co-founders of Serve 2 Unite, which formed in 2012 after six members of a Sikh temple in Milwaukee were murdered by a white supremacist.

“To have partners who understand the complexity of healing from our history of division and hate will take courage. It will take courage to not only reflect on societal harm, but it will also take courage to look into the harm that we all may engage in through our perceptions, biases, actions, and sometimes inactions that continue this harm. Our world is calling upon us to ease the suffering of the wounds of the past and to usher in a future that is embracing of all of God’s creation, and we can only do this if we have courage,” maintained Kaleka.

According to ADL Connecticut, “Their desire to fight hate and make a difference is a timely reminder of the strength of the human spirit and the courage and compassion that reside within all of us.”

The event, which takes place in Hamden Hall’s Taylor Performing Arts Center, is part of the Beckerman Lecture Series. Founded by the Beckerman Family Foundation, the lecture series promotes engaging conversations about topics and themes that have shaped our world and continue to impact our place in the global community. This is the ninth offering of Hamden Hall’s Beckerman Lecture Series, which began in 2013.

Click here to view a video featuring the story behind the unexpected friendship of a Sikh and a former skinhead.

Registration required for this event. Price per person is $18 and $5 for students. Click here to register or contact Terry Sidera at 203.780.0209 / tsidera@adl.org for more information.

Hamden Hall Country Day School

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Hamden Hall Country Day School is a nurturing and inclusive community with a dynamic learning environment that promotes academic excellence by understanding each child and fostering their individual growth.