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Photography by: Bijay Dixit of Unique Photo Images
“Children are our future and we must let them lead the way to be leaders we are proud of. However, this could happen only if everyone spoke up against child abuse and believed in the motto — Let there be peace at home and let it begin with me.”
AN EVENING WITH PHILANTHROPIST INDRANI GORADIA AND WBEA PRESIDENT APRIL DAY
Article by: Manu Shah
IACCGH members and guests listened in shocked silence as Keynote Speaker Indrani Goradia, Founder of Indrani’s Light Foundation shared her story and those of countless women and children who are victims of domestic violence at the Women Mean Business Series.
As the Founder of a nonprofit family foundation, Indrani works to eradicate gender violence and enable women and families to live empowered lives. The organization has centers in the US, India, Trinidad, and Tobago.
In a moving account, Indrani described her own personal battle against severe childhood abuse and remembers thinking that this is “normal.” She quoted UN reports which state that the greatest public health threat comes not from HIV or Ebola but violence against women and children and it has reached “plague proportions.” She described the violence as a “disease” and asserted that expressing love through violence is a lie.
Verbal, emotional and psychological abuse are other forms of abuse often used by abusers. The sad reality, Indrani noted, is that boys who are abused more often than not beat their wives and children while girls who are abused grow up to “expect and accept” abuse. Tragically, jails are also full of children who were abused as children and are one of the many ravages of abuse.
As is the Chamber’s practice, the event matched a nonprofit leader with someone from the business world. It invited April Day, President of the Women’s Business Enterprise Alliance to share her personal journey to the top ranks of the business world.
The WBEA is a leading third-party certifying organization that serves 1700 women by increasing opportunities for aspiring women entrepreneurs, women-owned businesses through educational programs, access to funding, business development, and professional networking.
April had her share of hurdles to cross. She inspired everyone to reach beyond their current obstacles and use them as the fuel to ignite and awaken their inner strength. Describing herself as “awkward with severe asthma” while growing up, she was determined to overcome the odds to succeed.
Invoking what April coined “Grit and Grace, she challenged the gathering to listen to our inner voice that tells us to “get up” when we are knocked down.
April Day also outlined the process of certification requirements of being 51% women-owned and controlled while sharing important pointers such as networking with purpose, doing your research, be the go-to person and always follow up.