Karuna Charities' 16th Annual Diwali Gala was held on Sunday, November 16, 2014. The event was attended by over 300 supporters.
The highly successful fundraiser for the needy in the U.S. and India was covered by Aziz Hanifa in India Abroad under the self-explanatory banner: "Karuna Charities: Grandmothers and role models".
Guest of Honor, N.K. Mishra, Minister of Community Affairs at the Indian Embassy praised Karuna Charities' contributions for uplifting the less fortunate.
A senior Director from the Universities at Shady Grove (USG), William Schlossburg noted Karuna Charities partnership with USG to establish an endowed scholarship. These scholarships help change the lives of students who in turn help others.
Representatives from NOVA, Montgomery College, and UDC with which Karuna Charties has established scholarships attended the function as did a representative from the Abused Persons Program, Department of Health and Human Services, Montgomery County, MD, as well as representative from the American Red Cross in the National Capital Region, Fairfax, VA.
India Abroad noted that with the efforts of its president, Amrit Kalotra, Karuna Charities has grown into one of the D.C. region's leading charitable organizations.
A warm welcome address by Mrs. Amrit Kalotra, President of Karuna Charities described how Karuna Charities has helped the victims of domestic violence, poverty, and illness with financial and moral support as they transition towards independent living. Karuna also helps feed the homeless, provides medical supplies and supports orphanages and the sick. Karuna has given generously towards helping victims of natural disasters.
Hands-on community work is conducted annually by the board members and friends of Karuna at the Missionaries of Charity during Diwali and at the D.C. Shelter around Thanksgiving/Christmas.
The event included a dance performance by the students of the Kalanjali School of Folk Dance. The show was choreographed by Priti Vasavada.
The Singing Talent Contest is one of the most popular events of the day. The audience participates in choosing the winner by voting in groups at each table. Ruhi Maniyar won in the female category and Pradeep Kulkarni and Vipul Shah won jointly in the male category.
Karuna Charities thanks DJ Hemant for his energizing music, local television anchor, Nilima Mehra, the graceful emcee, and Bombay Tandoor for excellent catering.