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"From Tragedy to Triumph," documentary focuses on re-entry and ways to reduce violence in our community

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Posted at 11:10 PM, Feb 20, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-20 23:10:58-05

INDIANAPOLIS — February 20th is World Social Justice Day, and this year the theme is "Bridging Gaps, building alliances."

Two groups, whose mission aims to help those who have served time get back into society, premiered a documentary focusing on re-entry and ways to reduce violent crime.

"My son got killed in 2016," Aster Bekele, Founder and Executive Director of The Felege Hiywot Center said.

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Unimaginable pain and fostering solutions to make a difference in the community.

"My son struggled as far as being alone, not really having a dad around, not a mentor, all of that but he got in so much trouble," Bekele said.

When her son had gotten out of prison, she said he was trying to turn his life around, but time was not on his side, and he was killed.

"It hurts every time somebody gets killed. The pain starts all over again," Bekele said.

Pain she's hoping will change for the better as she continues to mentor youth at Felege Hiywot Center in the Martindale Brightwood neighborhood on the northeast side of Indianapolis.

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"They served their time and just making sure we support supporting them in that way," Winta Gebremichael, Director of Reentry for the Office of Public Health and Safety said.

On World Social Justice Day, the Mayor's Office of Reentry joined Felege Hiywot Center to view a documentary looking into the reentry program and ways to reduce violence.

"We're not just trying to talk about it. We're trying to be the answer," Gebremichael said.

"So, what I'm hoping today is that people listen and say let's work together," Bekele said.

After the viewing of the documentary, commitment cards were passed out for those in attendance to sign allowing the Office of Reentry to follow-up and reach more people.