DASRA – Dasra Philanthropy Forum goes to New York

There are 113 million adolescent girls in India – potential, essential agents of change in the struggle to break the cycle of poverty and deprivation, but facing a range of challenges such as child marriage, education, malnutrition and gender-based violence. In an endeavour to empower these girls, Dasra took its signature annual philanthropy event to New York, where it held its Dasra Philanthropy Forum on 10 November at the Ford Foundation (pictured), an event at which members of the Indian diaspora mixed with world leaders in philanthropy.

Ford Foundation building in New York City. Credit: Stakhanov.

Ford Foundation building in New York City. Credit: Stakhanov.

Speakers at the forum included luminaries such as Darren Walker (president of the Ford Foundation), Jennifer and Peter Buffett (co-presidents of the Novo Foundation), Desh Deshpande (USA board chairman of Akshaya Patra) and Peggy Dulany (chairperson of the Synergos Institute). In all, more than 150 philanthropists, business leaders and foundation representatives attended. The philanthropists met face to face with some of the non-profit organizations – and leaders from Magic Bus, the Mann Deshi Foundation and the Society for Nutrition, Education & Health Action outlined the current need for philanthropic support to create larger impact and empower girls in India.

There was a palpable appetite for learning and collaboration at this event, and donors added usefully different perspectives on the conversations. With such strong interest from US philanthropists, foundations and companies in giving effectively to India, Dasra will from now on be hosting this event annually and holding other small-scale gatherings to showcase its research and highlight effective ways of giving to address India’s pressing social challenges.

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