Bingley Grammar School

Yr 12 Reflections on Arek Hersh's Visit

"After meeting Arek and Jean, I feel so honoured to be a part of a modern society that is much more tolerant of different faiths and different cultures. I’ve learnt to have more humility and compassion for others, because I’m so fortunate to be in the position I am today. The fact that Arek has been through so much adversity, and has come out the other side flourishing, shows that we can overcome even the hardest obstacles in life. I feel so privileged, because we are the last generation of people that can say we have actually met a true Holocaust survivor. I will never forget the emotions after hearing Arek speaking about his experience, and I will pass it on to many people in the future." Amber Richards, Yr 12.

"The experience of meeting Arek and Jean Hersh is an experience that I will undoubtedly carry with me for the rest of my life. One of the first things which touched me was how caring and humble Arek is!  What amazed me the most was that despite all the horrible and traumatic experiences he went through, Arek had such a positive and optimistic view for everything ! This experience has taught me many things that I can implement into my everyday life one of the main being tolerance and having a positive view about everything. After hearing what Arek had to experience at such a young innocent age it has made me feel very grateful for everything I have in my life as well as appreciating the little things in life too! It was a truly memorable experience meeting Arek and I hope his legacy continues to inspire youngsters just as much as it has inspired me!" Hannah Hussain, Yr 12.

"Meeting Arek and his wife Jean was an experience I will hold throughout my life. It was incredible to meet a man who has been through harrowing experiences in childhood to be the most kind, open and giving person I have ever encountered in my life. The talk with Arek made me so grateful for what I have in life now and made me realise that when something awful happens in the world you don’t have to be bitter. I believe that day, has taught me to be more tolerant and patient with people. Arek told us how he battled with nightmares, the aftermath of being liberated and how he built his life up again, which I thought was incredible for him to keep going. This has also taught me to keep on going even when you think there’s no point, because learning from this man I now know that there is always hope." Gracie Caine, Yr 12.

"Meeting Arek was an experience that we shall not forget.  The first thing that struck me about Mr. Hersh was his tolerance, which could have been easily extinguished through his unforgiveable years of torment. All eyes were on him but all thoughts were on his harrowing story. His love of life and educating the youth of today truly inspired us and deeply touched the hearts of everyone present." Georgia Averill and Bella Whiteley, Yr 12.

01 Arek and Jean with Yr12 RE students

03 Arek and Jean Hersh

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