A US nonprofit organisation devoted to accelerating social and economic change in India has raised USD 150,000 for the empowerment of people with disability in the country at a fund-raising event, an official statement said today.
“There are 70 million people with disabilities in India, and less than two per cent are employed,” said Lata Krishnan, chair of American India Foundation (AIF), which is known for funding social and educational work aimed at empowering the weaker and underprivileged sections of the society.
“At AIF we believe that it is what you are able to do -not your disability -that defines you,” she said.
Funds raised during the gala in Maryland on Friday will directly benefit AIF’s Ability-Based Livelihood Empowerment (ABLE) programme which works to ensure that persons with disabilities are able to obtain equal, inclusive and dignified livelihoods, the statement said.
Former US Ambassador to India Frank G Wisner honoured Raj and Neera Singh, Founders of Telcom Ventures, LLC in recognition for their outstanding philanthropy and leadership.
Emphasising on the value of education, Raj and Neera said they had continue to support education and livelihood programmes across India, including AIF.
“There is no better way than education to make this world a better place and AIF does wonderful work for this noble cause,” Raj said.
The gala also recognised the leadership of Aruna Miller, 15th Legislative District Representative of the Maryland House of Delegates.
AIF has partnered with 227 of India’s NGOs while raising over USD 84 million since its inception in 2001.