Chardi Kala Project

Kamalla Kaur
Bellingham, Washington, US
$0past 12 months

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Our Origin

The Chardi Kala Project was founded in January of 2018 by Kamalla Kaur and Dr. Kirpal Singh, with the help of Whatcom County Gurdwaras and Sikh volunteers.  It is designed as a pilot program that will model how to promote understanding of Sikh culture in non-Sikh communities.

Since its founding, the Chardi Kala Project has reached approximately 15,000 folks through in-school educational programs, Interfaith events, as well as community outreach. Additionally, local gurdwaras participate in the Chardi Kala Project's seva to feed the homeless in Whatcom County.

Our Mission

The Chardi Kala Project's mission is to tackle hate crimes against Sikhs, and others, via advocacy through education. According to the Sikh Coalition, Washington state is the third most dangerous place for Sikhs in the United States. 

Our Goals

1. Increase our presence in the Whatcom Counties public and private schools through basic presentations about Sikhs, Sikhi, and local Sikh pioneer history. 

2. To initiate a campaign to educate civic leaders about Sikhs and the challenges Sikh's face.

3. Produce annual Children's Art Festival and Gurdwara Open House to introduce and familiarize the broader Whatcom community with the local Sikh sangat.

4. Broaden our outreach to have a greater presence at local fairs and festivals.

5. Create more field trip opportunities for college students and local clubs to visit Gurdwaras to share Langar and conversation about advocacy for Sikh and non-Sikh communities who experience hate crimes.

6. Expand "ONE Whatcom!" events: collaborations with other grassroots organizations, such as Better Together--BLM, to connect with other communities facing hate crimes.

7. To grow our capacity to serve the hungry through our seva to the homeless community.

  • 06/06/2023

    Washington State Park and Recreation Conference

    The Chardi Kala Project attended the Washington State Parks and Recreation Conference this past May.

    Rosa Caldwell and Kamala Rose Kaur spoke about Bellingham,WA Parks and Recreation's collaboration with the Chardi Kala Project. The presentation aimed to inspire other Washington State cities to get to know and better serve their Sikh communities.


  • 06/06/2023

    High School Students tour Gurdwara

    Friday, April 28, 2023

    The Chardi Kala Project hosted 85 high school students from Lynden Christian High School, with their teachers and principal, at the Guru Nanak Gursikh Gurdwara (Pole Road, Lynden).

    85 students! Two school buses are full. And none of them arrived with head coverings.
    No problem; the Gurdwara has lots of kerchiefs for people to wear. But getting them all tied on so many heads, all at the same time was challenging.

    Yet soon, everyone washed their hands and got delicious vegetarian Indian food in Langar Hall. The magic of Langar - sitting together and sharing a meal - had its usual universal mellowing effect.

    After learning about the tradition of Langar and eating the delicious meal, we went into the Worship Hall. The students got to see the Sri Guru Granth Sahib (Sikh Holy Book and Guru), and ragis (musicians) played gurbani kirtan (Sikh hymns) for them. All the basics about the Sikh religion were shared. And questions got answered.

    Almost every student reached out to say "thank you" as they left. The principal and teacher asked if we could do it again next year.

    Eighty-five students is a large field trip, and high schoolers can be a challenging audience, but today was a delightful and grand experience. Fully satisfying and fun.


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