BURLINGTON, MA–Saheli, a community-based organization in Massachusetts founded in 1996 with the mission to empower South Asian women and their families to live safe and healthy lives, announced that the non-profit organization will honor four individuals who have contributed to the growth and mission of Saheli.
The four individuals, who will honored at Saheli’s biennial fundraising event “Nirbhaya” on Sunday, Dec. 8, 2019 at Burlington Marriott Hotel in Burlington, MA, are: Anu Chitrapu, Kaplesh Kumar, Dr. Manju Sheth, MD, and Jerry Tutor.
“Saheli is fortunate to have many supporters in our community and we are excited to honor four of them this year. They have contributed immensely to the cause of Saheli,” said Neelam Wali, Chair of Nirbhaya 2019. “Building a community of well-wishers starts right where we all live. There are many ways we all make a difference and together we all can build bridges and find common grounds. People we are honoring on December 8 have all helped Saheli in different ways but mission has always been same: How can we help Saheli grow.”
Ms. Wali said that she and Saheli team are thankful to Ms. Chitrapu, Mr. Kumar, Dr. Sheth, and Mr. Tutor for their “generosity of time and money to make Saheli a place where we can comport and help the tried and broken families who come to Saheli for short and timely comport.:
“My special thanks to Kaplesh ji, Dear Manju, Dear Anu and Jerry for staying with us unconditionally,” Ms. Wali said.
Here are brief bios of the recipients of Saheli honors for 2019:
Ms. Chitrapu is Senior Vice-President and Executive at Bank of America. She has won awards at the bank for exceptional performance, been named to the high potential women leaders group and is the executive sponsor for the Boston chapter of the Asian Leadership Network. She serves as treasurer of DAWN (Direct Action for Women Now. Ms. Chitrapu holds an MBA from MIT Sloan School of Management.
Mr. Kumar, a registered patent attorney and general counsel for Mayflower Communications Company, Inc., is former president of India Association of Greater Boston, known as IAGB. Earlier, Mr. Kumar held technical and program management positions at Draper Laboratory, Inc., a large MIT R&D spin-off. An alumnus of IIT Kanpur, he has a doctorate from MIT, and Law degree with High Honors from New England Law/Boston. He is admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court and the federal District Court for the First District of Massachusetts. He has 17 U.S. patents, including the fundamental patent on the key technology of the Nickel Metal Hydride battery.
His association with IAGB began in the early 1970s as President of MIT’s Sangam. Later, during his term as IAGB President in the mid-1990s, his team revived IAGB from a dormant, almost defunct, state to the vibrant organization of today, and celebrated India’s 50th Independence Day anniversary on a grand scale at the Hatch Shell, a legacy that has since been built upon and continued. The South Asian women’s support group Saheli was formed under his leadership. He has also served as President of the Massachusetts chapter of the Indian American Forum for Political Education, and he co-founded IIT Society in New England, IIT SINE.
Dr. Manju Sheth, MD
Dr. Sheth is a physician at Beth Israel Lahey Health. A Board Certified Internist with keen interest in women’s health, Dr. Sheth is co-producer of NECA Awards and co-founder of INE Multimedia, a Waltham, MA-based (501c-3) non-profit organization devoted to promoting and supporting charitable organizations, art, culture, education and empowerment through workshops, seminars and multimedia.
She works at Beth Israel Lahey Health. She was voted in the 150 ‘Women of Influence’ by YW of Boston in 2016. Dr. Sheth served as president of Indian Medical Association of New England in 2013. She has been a big advocate for empowerment of women and has been voted Woman of the year in 2011. Dr. Sheth is the creator and host of the popular “Chai with Manju” celebrity interview series as well as “Dreamcatchers” featuring people from the local community who have made their dreams a reality. Dr. Sheth was the ch-chair of Saheli’s first fundraiser in 2009, and has been involved in every fundraiser since then.
Attorney Jerry (Gerald) Tutor is Saheli’s family law advisor and legal trainer. He is a member of the Access to Justice Fellows Commission. Mr. Tutor retired recently from Corrigan, Johnson and Tutor, PA.
He is a Member of the Massachusetts Bar since 1974, was admitted to United States District Court (District of Massachusetts) and First Circuit Court of Appeals and is a former member of the Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys.
He concentrates in civil litigation in all state and federal courts in the Eastern District of Massachusetts, with emphasis on personal injury and family law. For the past two years Attorney Tutor has offered legal training to Saheli staff and advocates who accompany women to court to provide legal advocacy. He also offers free legal consultations to women who need advice in family law disputes.
Saheli’s biennial fundraising event “Nirbhaya” will be held on Sunday, Dec. 8, 2019, at Burlington Marriott Hotel in Burlington, MA.
In 2018 alone, Saheli provided 183 women and 300 children with counseling, legal, and financial assistance, and in many cases, shelter, and protection in the area.
While addressing the issue of domestic violence in the South Asian community, the event will be a fun evening filled with food, friends, and music as Saheli celebrates more than 23 years of service in New England.
To buy tickets or to donate to Saheli, please go to https://saheli-nirbhaya.eventbrite.com. Ticket prices are shown below. For information about Nirbhaya, sponsorship opportunities and group table purchases, please write to firstname.lastname@example.org
Saheli’s Tax ID # is: 03-0547972 for income tax purposes. All donations are tax deductible and receipts will be sent.
If your company matches charitable donations, please send an online form to the above address and Saheli will submit it. Thank you for your help.
Gala ticket prices:
Table of 10: $700.
- $1,000 to provide 50 hours of Helpline support services to survivors of abuse
- $750 to provide 25 people group therapy and support
- $500 to provide educational assistance to 1 South Asian domestic violence survivor
- $250 to train one volunteer to become an agent of social change in the community
- $100 to buy 2 monthly subway tickets for a woman to obtain crucial services.