Tuesday, March 21, 2017

American India Foundation Raises Money for Disability in India





A graduate of Parsons School of Design, Asha Pabla has built a successful career in fashion design. Outside of work, Asha Pabla remains involved with the global community through organizations like the American India Foundation (AIF), where she sits on the board of directors.

AIF works to accelerate both social and economic change in India. Recently, the organization announced that it had raised $150,000 to help people in the country who are struggling with disabilities, noting that less than 2 percent of the 70 million people with disabilities in India are gainfully employed. 

The funds will go directly to the AIF initiative Ability-Based Livelihood Empowerment (ABLE), through which people with disabilities are connected to inclusive job opportunities so that they can earn dignified livelihoods. The $150,000 was generated through a fundraising gala held in Maryland and organized by Aruna Miller, a member of the state’s House of Delegates. Since its inception, AIF has raised more than $84 million to fund its critical projects across 23 states in India.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Itzhak Perlman - A Musician Who Sees Charity as a Moral Obligation


An accomplished fashion designer, Asha Pabla has worked for a number of major textile and apparel companies. Recreationally, Asha Pabla maintains a passion for the arts and is especially fond of violinist Itzhak Perlman.

Last year, Perlman won the Genesis Prize, an award that recognizes people who have made a major contribution to their professional fields while upholding a dedication to humanitarian service and Jewish values. During his acceptance speech, he talked about growing up in Tel Aviv.

Perlman comes from a poor family that struggled to get enough food. He remembers receiving care packages from an aunt living in Toronto, which consisted of fruit cocktail tins, jars of chicken soup, and a few dollars to spend on something fresh. Despite this dire situation, his family continued to give a couple of pennies at a time to the Jewish National Fund. For his family, tzedakah, the moral obligation to give, was a way of life.

While Perlman’s situation has changed dramatically since his childhood, he is still driven by tzedakah to give back to the community and share the wealth he has accumulated.