That seems to be the motto of Tufaan Entertainment Group, the student’s organization at Northwestern University in Illinois, which donated $10,000 to the Jan Madhyam project in New Delhi, India. Tufaan Entertainment Group organized a national level Bollywood fusion dance competition in March of 2011. Nine dance teams from all over the country participated in this competition and the proceeds from this event were donated to Jan Madhyam a Vibha supported project which strives to help girls with physical and mental disabilities. Recently I had the opportunity to chat with Eisha Wali, one of the members of Tufaan Entertainment Group to learn more about them and the motivation behind this generous gift. Eisha is also an accomplished dancer herself and is currently pursuing her degree in medicine. Here are the some excerpts from this interview.
Me: How did you hear about Vibha and Jan Madhyam project?
Eisha: Right from the beginning of the event planning our goal was to raise money for a charity. We wanted to support an organization which had similar goals as ours, that is to promote the arts, preferably in South Asia. We also wanted to make sure that the money we donated reached the beneficiaries and that the project could be monitored easily. Months before the actual event we found Vibha through their website and communicated with them regarding donating money to a project. After numerous emails and phone calls we were convinced that Vibha was a good organization to entrust our money with. Among the many projects Vibha supports we chose Jan Madhyam as it promotes the development of disabled girls through the use of different forms of arts. We also spoke with the founder of Jan Madhyam to know more about the project before we made the decision to go with this project.
Me: Have you received any updates from Jan Madhyam?
Eisha: Vibha has been in contact with me to keep me updated. Also one of our team members Ashna visited the project. She met with the staff and participants of Jan Madhyam. While at the project site she spoke to girls with mental and physical disabilities who noted that Jan Madhyam gave them a purpose when nothing else did. Two girls emphasized how Jan Madhyam taught them important life skills in which they began to excel, so that they could stand up on their own two feet and not feel like a burden or responsibility on their parents. Overall this visit was very rewarding and vindicated our decision to support Jan Madhyam. Going forward we would love to get biannual updates from the project so we can see the impact we made through our donations and share it with the rest of the Tufaan Entertainment group which labored so hard to raise the money.
Me: What is your advice to other event organizers who are contemplating on donating to charities?
Eisha: It’s going to be incredible amount of work to organize events of this scale but you need to keep your goal in mind (that is to donate to charity), so you need to constantly remind yourself of the fact that this all for a good cause. Although you might get carried away with organizing the event the best way possible, you need to make sure that you are saving enough money to donate to charity. In spite of the hard work involved, it’s an extremely gratifying experience to be able to raise money for a good cause.