Human Development Foundation of North America Organizes Impressive Fundraiser
By Syed Feroz Qasim
Pictures by Anwar Khawaja
This year’s Human Development Foundation of North America Fundraiser at the Wyndham Resort Hotel in Anaheim on Saturday, October 10 th, 2015 once again vividly testified to the community’s sustained drive for improving the lot of the underprivileged people of Pakistan. A select group of community members raised money to support various projects of the HDF in all four provinces of Pakistan and Azad Kashmir.
As usual, the program started with a recitation from the Holy Qur’an and its English translation by Faisal Qasim. This year’s emcee was Dr Sana Kamdar who moved the program smoothly with her introductions.
The opening remarks were presented by Fatima Khan. The program was then moved forward by Dr Yasmin Qasim who had successfully brought the leading lights of the community to the event. Dr Attiya Khan, Chairperson of HDF, made a passionate appeal for help and presented a slide show of HDF activities in different provinces of Pakistan. She expressed thanks to all HDF donors and described at length how their donations were instrumental in educating 10,000 boys and girls in the poorest areas and in providing care to over 25,000 individuals in 9 health centers. The donations have facilitated over 8000 small business micro-loans to raise self-sufficient families and in building 31 water filtration plants.
In a span of 16 years HDF has an impressive number of achievements to its credit. It has established adult literacy centers for women, built schools for underprivileged boys and girls, healthcare centers in rural areas of Pakistan and provided micro loans. The Foundation continues to help people to help themselves by working in the most desolate areas of Pakistan, and most importantly, giving people the insight to realize their potential to better their lives.
This year’s keynote speaker, Dr Arjuman Hashmi, who is also the Mayor of City of Paris, Texas, was unable to attend due to some urgent city business assignments.
The Chief Guest, Mr Hamid Asghar Khan, Consul General of Pakistan in Los Angeles, spoke of the need to help Pakistan elevate poverty through a structured approach.
The Special Guest and keynote speaker was Mr Syed Javaid Anwar, a renowned Pakistani American businessman who has made a great name for himself in the American oil and gas industry. He is admired in the community as an outstanding business leader and a philanthropist. A man of integrity who believes in honesty, education and hard work. A man with a big heart who generously supports charitable causes locally and in Pakistan - hospitals, schools and many organizations. Mr Anwar made a generous contribution again this year.
He spoke on the need for a better world and how we as individuals can make this happen. He appreciated HDF’s and Dr Yasmin’s efforts in the many areas HDF is involved in. Mr Anwar spoke of his humble beginning in life and his hard work that played a major role in his success.
Guests who were sponsors and made generous donations included Dr Sana and Safura Khan, Mr Saleem and Yasmeen Adaya, Mr Navaz and Fauzia Malik, Mr Anees and Mariam Bakali of Fantasy Activewear, and Dr Khalid and Ghazala Khan. Others present also made donations from $100 to $1000.
Dr Yasmin Qasim has successfully organized HDF fundraisers in Southern California for the last thirteen years and each occasion has been a memorable one. This year’s event was indisputably one of the best, both in the format and content; her team of Ghazala Khan, Parveen Imdad, Fatima Khan, and Dr Muslim Jami are to be duly commended for their efforts. Congrats to Dr Qasim for her hard work and continued support of HDF. Ghazala Khan and Parveen Imdad played a prominent role in organizing the event and their contribution is greatly appreciated.
The guests were treated to a sumptuous dinner catered by Mr Dara Khan of Shahnawaz Restaurant. After dinner the guests enjoyed a highly entertaining musical program late into the night by famous singer and entertainer Chranjeet and his band.