Pratham Usa’s Boston Chapter Raises $350,000 At 2017 Fundraising Gala For Education In India
The Pratham Boston Gala, held on Friday, September 29th, 2017 at the InterContinental Hotel, was a celebration on multiple dimensions. It was a celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Pratham Chapter in Boston, dedicated to children's literacy in India and ensuring children are in school and learning well. It was also a celebration for every person who was there - a celebration of the education that brought them to the table and empowered them to give a gift of education to millions of children in India.
The evening was kicked off by the Chapter President, Pratima Abichandani, who shared that “27 million children are born in India each year and two-thirds of them will not complete secondary education.” She passionately spoke about how everyone had the opportunity to help millions of these underprivileged gain access to education, which opens a world of opportunity to them and shuts the doors to poverty, crime and helplessness behind them.
Earlier this year, as part of a Harvard University sociology course that investigates the nature of philanthropy and nonprofit organizations and their influence on civil society, four freshmen helped direct a grant of $15,000 to Pratham. Speaking on behalf of that team, Avanti Nagral, shared why Pratham was so generously supported by the organization and what makes it so effective. Guests also heard from Nisha Sisodiya, who was provided seed capital and mentorship to start her beauty parlor by the Pratham’s Beauty Entrepreneurship program. Today, the business is thriving, Nisha has hired several trainees from Pratham's Beauty program and hopes to open a second salon in the near future. “Pratham has not only helped me turn my own life around, but has helped scores of women like me who are unable to leave their homes to go to cities for jobs. Pratham has helped us turn a part of our homes into mini-businesses and ourselves into entrepreneurs,” said Nisha before receiving a standing ovation.
The keynote speaker of the evening, Rukmini Banerji, CEO of Pratham Education Foundation, spoke about how at 23 years old, Pratham is now poised, experienced and willing to try new things and jump a lot higher than before! Rukmini also emphasized on the historical relationship Pratham shares with MIT’s JPAL. By undergoing several RCT’s over the years, JAPL has helped Pratham evaluate its impact and grown more effective over the years.
Inspired by the work of Pratham, an audience of over 225 people committed their support through the pledge drive- where every child reached, was a dream ignited.
As a fitting conclusion, singer Vasudha Sharma started the musical celebrations with some lilting melodies and later was joined by DJ Yogi as the crowd moved to the dance floor.
The Pratham Boston gala was truly a celebration of education and innovation. See pictures of the event here. Join the journey by visiting www.prathamusa.org.