Name of Event: Gratitude Gala
Date: November 21, 2020
Participants: Over 10,000 families, businesses, non-profits, government officials, and philanthropic leaders from around the world.
Goal: The funds raised will provide COVID relief to migrant workers, including cooked meals, ration boxes for families, and Happiness Boxes containing 30 days worth of food, hygiene products, and education supplies to our mid-day meal beneficiaries.
The 7th and grand finale gala of 2020 was hosted by the TriState chapters and was a joyous celebration of Akshaya Patra’s 20th Anniversary. With deep gratitude to our fearless chapter teams, youth ambassadors, especially donors who came together from across all chapters in the US to make a meaningful contribution in children’s lives in India, a segment was dedicated to medical front line workers who have worked tirelessly during the pandemic to secure the health and safety for millions.
Thank you to over 10,000 viewers who joined us live on our web page, Facebook, YouTube and on TV Asia.
Kicking off the event, Dr. Rachana Kulkarni shared an intimate conversation with elegant and graceful actress and politician Hema Malini. Hema shared her favorite silver screen moments and roles and discussed how she utilizes her platform to make a difference in education and women’s empowerment. We heard from inspirational poet Javed Akhtar, who graced us by sharing one of his original poems, Bhookh (Hunger). The Consul General of India Randhir Jaiswal expressed his admiration for Akshaya Patra’s achievements and partnership with the Indian Government to change millions of children’s lives. As a tribute, the talented lyricist Swanand Kirkire recited a poem he wrote and dedicated to Akshaya Patra.
Throughout the evening, world-renowned singer and music composer Shankar Mahadevan enthralled the audience with semi-classical compositions from Bandish Bandits, Bhajans, and renderings of Pandit Bhimsen Joshi to modern foot-tapping numbers from Kal ho Na Ho and Lakshya.
If you missed the event, please be sure to watch our recap video below to see the event highlights and musical performances!