My mother and my sisters were instrumental in shaping my views on women starting at an early age of 6, subsequent to my father's untimely demise. My mother got married at 16, became a widow by 40, and raised us on her own with no marketable skills. I witnessed the ordeal of suffering and numerous sacrifices made by them for the sake of my welfare. None of my sisters were able to complete high school given the pressures of the family and the need to work at odd jobs singing and dancing at weddings and other social events of friends and neighbors. They worked very hard and long hours to earn much needed money to sustain the family in the absence of the traditional father figure. I believe that millions encounter similar tragic situation as a result of complete dependence on the male head of family. My wife, Sue and I felt that educating and empowering young girls is the only way to make a difference in the lives of many unfortunate, disadvantaged and underprivileged segments of society.
We started by helping six female students pursue higher education in India. We created Surya- Chandra Foundation in the names of two of my sisters in April 2013 as a Platform to empower girls and women to rise above poverty and inequality.
Our Vision is Simple, yet impactful. Change the lives of 20,000 girls for the better in 20 years. We can do this by helping 1) the girls stay in school, complete secondary education. 2) pursue vocational training to acquire job related skills.
Our mission is:
To stop violence against women, and empower underprivileged women to rise above poverty and inequality through encouragement, basic education and vocational skills.
We educate and empower girls from very low income families and distraught segments of society.