HUM Magazine January 2013

Page 49

From left: Brij Kathuria, Treasurer & Board Member, Pratham Houston, Dr. Sapna Singh, Co-Chairs Annu Naik and Anuja Mehta, David Weekley, Chairman, David Weekley Homes, Swatantra Jain, President, Pratham Houston

Pratham’s Festive Holiday Luncheon Raises $120,000 for Education From left: Dr. Gauri Varadhachary, Board Member, Dr. Atul Varadhachary, President, Pratham USA, and Marie Goradia, Board Member

Elegance and philanthropy were the hallmarks of Pratham Houston’s annual holiday luncheon fundraiser held at the Junior League of Houston on December 7, 2012. Co-chaired by Annu Naik and Anuja Mehta, the event garnered $120,000 that will benefit the organization’s education programs in India. President of Pratham Houston, Swatantra Jain, shared some of Pratham’s recent achievements with gatherees. In 2011, Pratham Houston raised $1.6 million that is helping 70,000 at-risk children, with over 2.6 million children in India bettering their education through Pratham’s various programs. 54,000 youth gained vocational skills that enabled them to enter the workforce, and 48,000 teachers were trained to teach more effectively. Jain also spoke about a new program Pratham recently launched, The Beauty Entrepreneurship Program, to encourage the spirit of enterprise for women wherein Pratham loans $1600 to set up a beauty salon by providing training material and required guidance.

Keynote speaker, David Weekley of David Weekley Homes, who donates half of his income each year to charity, spoke inspirationally about why he chose Pratham as one of his beneficiaries and said that Pratham’s dedicated leadership, history of success, and transparent governance impressed him. Weekly exhorted attendees to give generously to the worthy cause that helps positively impact the futures of young people. Via video, guests got to see Pratham’s co-founder Madhav Chavan receive the prestigious WISE award (akin to the Nobel prize), and deliver his acceptance speech. Chavan’s dedication to Pratham came across eloquently. He has donated the $50,000 award to Pratham. Preceding the event, guests were treated to complimentary makeovers by Saks Fifth Avenue, and during lunch, got a sneak preview of the latest trends through a fashion show also by Saks Fifth Avenue.

January 2013

Photos: Deborah Wallace, Barfield Photography


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