Monday, December 29, 2008

September 2008, Wood River High School, Idaho

Mrs. Janet Denis, Student Services Teacher, invited Angad to speak at Wood River High School.

In a letter to Angad’s principal following the visit, Mrs. Denis wrote:

“Recently, about 300 of our students had the honor and the privilege to watch Angad’s video, One Light, to hear his message and also to ask him questions.

I was so impressed with the poise and ease with
which he addressed the large groups, with the powerful message he shared and how cheerfully he repeated it all 4 times.

His message about making the world a friendlier place by communicating with your neighbors, about being strong in your beliefs, about believing in yourself, and about not being angry when you are teased was incredibly powerful for our students to hear, but even more so because it was delivered by someone their own age.

When he talked about his basketball, marching band and keeping up with homework, they really related to him. When he turned a question about Sikh genocide over to his mother, many eyes were opened wide about religious intolerance.

Our Amnesty International Club is inspired to learn even more about this subject. Our Speech classes noted his polished speaking ability. Our Sociology class asked many historical and religious questions.
My personal and Social responsibility class was jolted into acting on volunteering ideas they have. Students that have been bullied or made to feel like an outsider were encouraged to deal with that in a positive way.
Our severely handicapped population was happy to be included in a presentation about being different.

As I told Angad, we don’t know what seeds of hope were planted that day.

Not only were other teachers impressed, many students wrote him personal letters telling him how he has inspired them and how they relate to being treated differently for lots of different reasons. I hope they encourage him to continue sharing his message whenever possible.

I also hope that you will continue to support and encourage this amazing young man to reach out to more students whenever the opportunity arises for him. You must be very proud to have such an exceptional student and ambassador in your school.”

Thank You, Mrs. Denis and the teachers at WHRS for the opportunity. Thank you students for the most inspiring and heartfelt letters. Your positive attitude, openness and desire to take your own steps give a big hope for a better world.

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