Girls' Education and Digital Learning Highlighted at SF Bay Area Gala
On September 9, 2017, well-wishers and supporters gathered at the beautiful Palo Alto Hills Golf & Country Club to celebrate Pratham’s achievements at the annual SF Bay Area Gala. This year’s event highlighted girls’ education and digital learning, two of Pratham’s core programs, and raised funds for the Second Chance program, which has been instrumental in helping female dropouts return to school to complete their secondary school education.
Dinny Devitre, a member of Pratham USA’s board of directors, began the evening by introducing a video for Pratham Digital (PraDigi), a learning app offering high-quality, interactive content aimed at supporting basic literacy for children in rural areas and urban slums in India.
Sanjana Das, a graduate of Pratham’s Vocational Training program, touched everyone’s heart with her story of overcoming a childhood of hardships and obstacles through determination, perseverance and the assistance of Pratham. CEO Dr. Rukmini Banerji spoke passionately about how Pratham’s programs have helped more than 50 million children and youth, noting that it costs $500 to put a young woman through Second Chance.
Last year’s Bay Area gala raised enough funding to support 130 girls in the program. Auctioneer Mark Turner established a goal of $100,000 to help 200 girls, and in less than 20 minutes, guests raised their paddles and exceeded that goal with $130,000 in commitments. A live auction brought in an additional $11,000. The funds raised from the evening will help more than 600 young women enroll in the program.
The evening concluded with a set by comedian Sammy Obeid, who provided moments of lightheartedness with his unique brand of analytic humor.