The event raised over USD 1.5 million to support AIF's mission of catalysing social and economic change in India and building stronger US-India ties.
    
Kurien and Dan Hesse, CEO of Internet service provider Sprint, were felicitated by AIF at its annual 'Spring Awards Gala' last week in the presence of several other prominent members of the Indian diaspora.
    
The two were honoured for their personal and corporate leadership, philanthropy and investment in India.
    
The gala raised over USD 1.5 million to support AIF's mission and highlighted its Market Aligned Skills Training (MAST) programme for persons with disability. The programme provides under-privileged and differently-abled youth with skills training and access to formal employment opportunities.
    
Receiving the honours, the awardees spoke about their passion for progress in India, the responsibility of companies to give back to their communities, and the importance of inclusivity in development, an AIF release said.
    
The audience at the gala pledged to support AIF's MAST programme for persons with disability.
    
AIF CEO Ravi Kumar said the funds raised in the pledge drive would help co-fund the next phase of MAST Disability programme in India.
    
The American India Foundation is focussed on catalyzing social and economic change in India and building stronger ties between New Delhi and Washington through high-impact interventions in education, livelihoods, public health and leadership development, with particular emphasis on empowering girls and women to achieve gender equity.
    
AIF partners with NGOs to develop and test solutions and with governments to create and scale sustainable impact.
    
The Foundation, which came into existence in 2001 at the initiative of the then US President Bill Clinton, has brought changes in the lives of more than 1.9 million of India's poor and aims to reach five million people by 2018.

(Agencies)

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