Indian-American NGO ‘Life Global USA’ holds women’s empowerment event

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Lamplighting ceremony at the June 16, 2019 event hosted by Life Global USA, in Wayne, N.J., to commemorate the 150th anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday and to support women’s empowerment projects in India through partner organizations Project Life and Share and Care. (Photo: PWM)

Life Global USA extends massive support to projects that change women’s lives in India at commemoration of Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary

More than 170 people attended Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary in Wayne, N.J. June 16, based on the theme of ‘Women’s Empowerment,’ hosted by the non-profit Life Global USA which invests in development projects in India.

Held at the India Cultural Society’s Mahatma Gandhi Center, men and women from the tri-state area and around the country, from diverse backgrounds including some 75 women professionals and housewives, came to celebrate Gandhi’s life and teachings and recognizing the work done by Life Global in partnership with Project Life, an Indian non-profit involved in building schools and empowering women through skills training.

Following the singing of the national anthems of the United States and India, Padma Shri Dr. Sudhir Parikh, president of Life Global, chairman of Parikh worldwide Media and ITV Gold, introduced the notable guests. Dr. Parikh also detailed the work being done by Life Global and its partners Project Life and Share and Care for education and women’s empowerment in India. In an interview with ITV Gold, Dr. Parikh appreciated the high attendance at the meeting despite it being Father’s Day.

These included Deputy Consul General Shatruganh Sinha from the Consulate General of India in New York, New Jersey State Senators Samuel Thompson, a Republican, and Nellie Pou, a Democrat. Sinha said there is much to be done to alleviate poverty in India. He praised Life Global and Mahatma Gandhi center for organizing the event celebrating the 150th anniversary of the great leader. He congratulated Dr. Parikh and Life Global for their work in women’s empowerment and other areas.

Highlights of the event included the unveiling of the Indian postal stamp featuring Mahatma Gandhi along with mint Indian currency of the amounts of Rupees 200, Rs. 100, and Rs. 50.

Also unveiled was a book by Jitendra Adhia, Spring of Inspiration. Adhia, who was introduced at the event by Life Global President Arul Palkiwala, is the founder of the Mind Training Institute in India, was presented with a proclamation from the New Jersey legislature recognizing his community service. Adhia gives lectures on ‘mind power,’ and at the June 16 event in Wayne, he engaged the audience in a one and half hour lecture, Unleash the Power of Subconscious Mind.

Those present were introduced to the work of Life Global, an organization conceived in 2015 and registered as a non-profit in 2017, in the U.S. Over just two years of its existence, Life Global has helped distribute some $81,000 in grants for an elementary school in Dared, Saurashtra/Kutch, partnering with Project Life.

“Our goal is to build 108 schools with state of the art architecture earthquake-resistant,” Amar Shah, founding member of Life Global and current treasurer of the organization. told Desi Talk. “We are associated with Life Global chapters in India and U.K., and branches are going to be registered Canada and Australia this year. By the end of this month local chapters of Life Global are opening in Los Angeles and Chicago,” Shah said.

So far, 84 elementary schools (out of the 108) have already been built in India, according to Rushikesh Pandya, chief development officer of Project Life in Rajkot, India. The goal is to raise $250,000 to build two elementary schools, train 200 women to empower them with skills and basic banking training; and build one medical center, Pandya said. “We are aiming for a wholistic empowerment,” Pandya said. That includes a stipend of $350 for each woman, a 12-week training in sewing, or beautician, or chef’s skills, and giving them a market linkage to enable sale of products. “We have already trained some 7,500 women this way,” Pandya told Desi Talk.

During the June 16 event, the New Jersey Senators Thompson and Pou, gave a brief speech, as did Pandya, Vishva Bhatt, a student of Georgetown University, Washington, D.C. Guru Lokesh Muni came from Chicago and blessed the gathering.

Guruwant Shah, president of the Jain Association of North America (JAINA), was present at the event.

The Chief Minister of Gujarat Vijay Rupani sent a message appreciating Dr. Parikh; The Global Ambassador of Life Global, Jaydev Unadkat, a well-known cricketer, also sent a congratulatory message to organizers.

While Project Life is Life Global’s partner in India for implementing charitable projects, the well-known non-profit Share and Care is the organization’s partner for women’s empowerment projects.

Life Global made a special announcement during the event about the $120,000 donation from Tony and Vibha Subraj, to build a school in the memory of their father, in Jepur, Saurashtra, named Subraj Family Elementary School.

Women who attended the event were presented with shawls made by women in India who had undergone the empowerment training.

Pramoud Bhagat, chairman of India World Foundation, told ITV Gold in an interview at the June 16 event, that Life Global has his team’s full support in their endeavors; Indu Varia, another attendee, spoke of her visit to Rajkot, and meeting with poor women living on a dollar a day, and how Life Global had improved their lives.

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