In the Czech Republic, the Roma community has a long, culturally rich, and somewhat difficult story as the country’s largest minority ethnic group. Once derided as Gypsies, racial hostilities toward the Roma were glossed over for decades under communism, but, today the level of inequality in housing, employment, and education is starker than you’ll find in any American city.
For the past three years, Bader Philanthropies has sought to empower the Czech Roma community, through the lenses of education, culture, and expanded economic opportunity. Yechiel Bar-Chaim is a former country director at the American-Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, as well as a long-time philanthropic consultant to the Bader family on projects worldwide. Yechiel’s approach in the U.S., Europe, and the Middle East has centered around championing challenging topics that the wider society has typically avoided.
Join Yechiel for a look at the lives of the Czech Roma, the ways they are seeking to have a voice in their society, and parallels to social inequality in Milwaukee. Afterward, join us for a screening of the award-winning Czech film The Way Out [Cesta Ven], the story of a young Roma woman who wishes to live an ordinary life. Alone, she leads an unequal struggle against a mostly hostile majority while preserving her dignity.
3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.: Roma Educational Empowerment: How to Shape the Future in the Czech Republic
5:00 p.m. – 6:45 p.m.: Film Screening The Way Out [Cesta Ven]