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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Pratham Promotes Education and Equality at NY Gala Featuring Senator Kamala Harris

Sold-out event raises $3.6 million for the organization’s transformative education programs

Press Release – New York, NY, October 2, 2018 – On Friday, September 28, 2018, more than 600 business and community leaders gathered for a magical evening in celebration of Pratham, a nonprofit dedicated to improving the quality of education for underprivileged children in India. The event, held at the elegant Cipriani Wall Street, raised over $3.6 million for the organization’s transformative education programs.

California Senator Kamala Harris, who gave the night’s keynote address, connected with the audience through a deeply personal speech that reflected on her upbringing both here in the US and in India. She spoke about her family’s lineage as well as their commitment to “standing up for what’s right” and urged those in attendance to join the “collective fight” against hate and division, declaring, “The vast majority of us have so much more in common than what separates us.”

Pratham CEO Dr. Rukmini Banerji touched on similar themes as she described Pratham’s plans to bring communities across India together through its Hamara Gaon (our village) initiative. “From California to the beaches in Chennai…to the hospital in Chandigarh…to the work we do…we truly are connected,” she explained. “If you don’t have a community which is strong, it will be very difficult to build long-term foundations of both productivity and equity.”

Mentalist and motivational speaker Oz Pearlman delighted the crowd with a unique mind-reading performance, which blended magic and humor. The night also featured very successful live and silent auctions.

“What an amazing evening!” remarked Pratham New York Tri-State chapter president Gagan Singh. “We are absolutely overwhelmed by the support we received, and the money raised through this event will have a profound and lasting impact on the lives of millions of children.”

The Gala had many corporate sponsors including Dome Equities, Kirkland Ellis LLP, Synechron, Blackrock and EY.


Established in the slums of Mumbai in 1995, Pratham is now one of India’s largest non-governmental education organizations, having affected the lives of more than 58 million underprivileged children in the past two decades. To achieve its mission of “every child in school and learning well,” Pratham develops practical solutions to address gaps in the education system and works in collaboration with India’s governments, communities, educators, and industry to increase learning outcomes and influence education policy.

Pratham USA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a consistent four-star rating from Charity Navigator that seeks to raise awareness and mobilize financial resources for its work in India. For more information or to make a tax-deductible contribution, visit

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