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$35,000 raised for rural Indian kids

December 22, 2005 02:01 IST
Spread India, a social service agency based in Farmington Hills, Michigan collected more than $35,000 through pledges and onsite donations at its third annual fund-raiser.

The special guests included Michigan state senator Hansen Clarke; community leader and philanthropist Narendar Reddy from Georgia; Kiran Vissa from Maryland, who is a director of AidIndia.org, and Bipin Patel from Michigan who is the director of information systems at Ford Motor Company.

More than 200 people attended the Spread India event, held at Sts Peter and Paul Church, Southfield, Michigan, at which the organization also celebrated Diwali. Spread India is the acronym for Society for the Promotion of Rural Environment And Development of India.

The special guests, along with Spread India president Sridhar Patel and board member Sudhakar Reddy, lit the Diwali lamps and inaugurated the event. Young artists of Lasyapriya Academy of Cultural Arts performed musical invocation to the gods.

Introducing his core team members, Patel said the team has been working hard to achieve its mission of providing underprivileged children with an opportunity

to gain the lifelong gift of education. They now help hundreds of children, he said.

Senator Clarke stressed the importance of education and congratulated Spread India for offering the rural underprivileged kids all the resources to get a good education and thus providing a channel and platform for members of the Indian community to take part in building the rural India.

Narender Reddy said Indians are contributing towards the enrichment of US economy, but lagging behind in philanthropy. Vissa appealed to the people to contribute to the good cause of educating the rural children, a release said.

Patel said education will help rural Indian children open many doors.

Sudhakar Reddy gave a Power Point presentation of Spread India's activities and achievements. He explained Spread India's philosophy: 'We don't give fish to a boy, but we teach him how to catch a fish. That will make a lot of difference not only in his life but also in the lives of those around him.'

He said that by skipping an expensive dinner party at a hotel, or by avoiding an extravagant shopping in the outlet mall, people can save a lot and contribute that money to teach disadvantaged children.

A Correspondent in New York