This new platform was launched by Farida Kathawalla and Nirmala Garimella, two longtime supporters of AIF, which has impacted the lives of 4.6 million of India’s poor by providing access to high-quality education, formal sector employment for urban youth and rickshaw drivers, and public health services to protect the health of mothers and their children, while building the next generation of global leaders through service.
“The launch year of AIF’s Circle of Hope culminated with a celebration on June 7th in Belmont where all 16 members proudly handed over a check for $25,000 to the new initiative of the AIF’s ABLE program called RAISEWISE,” Circle of Hope said in a statement. “This yearlong program will help and support 100 women with disability in Bangalore in the state of Karnataka empowering them in self-defense techniques, life skills, counselling, awareness on sexual and reproductive health and financial literacy.”
Circle was launched in Belmont, MA with much hope and optimism in September last year.
“We had an idea of bringing together like-minded women at a more intimate and serious level, and embark on a journey of philanthropy together to support women in India who do not have many opportunities,” Ms. Kathawalla and Ms. Garimella, Co-founders of Circle of Hope, said in a joint statement. “We are so glad that this year long journey has culminated in sixteen amazing women who share the same passion. We are so grateful to them for making this possible.”
The group engaged in discussions on development issues over the course of the year that included a Jeffersonian dinner and sharing of ideas on philanthropy and women’s empowerment. Well known guest speakers who participated included Colette Phillips, Alyssa Wright and Marla Fletcher.
Manish Kumar, Program head of ABLE in India sent a note, saying: “Congratulations to the members for being able to inspire individuals to join the Circle of Hope for collective philanthropy for impact on women. Your hard work and commitment which was so clearly visible at the launch of this initiative in Boston last September, is bearing fruit now. Our wishes for this initiative to become stronger in years to come.”
All the women members of Circle of Hope hail from New England. They are: Preetha Chally, Neeru Oberoi, Pratima Srinivasan, Nalini Sharma, Anu Chitrapu, Mona Godbole, Namita Krishnan, Sangita Thakore, BJ Selenkow-Rippberger, Vaithehi Muttulingam, Ratti Handa, Maegan Oberoi, Shikha Malhotra and Sharda Kaul besides the two co-founders Farida Kathawalla and Nirmala Garimella.