Rekha Palriwala: A life of dedication to community service and events

Rekha Palrwiala
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Rekha Palrwiala
Rekha Palrwiala

Rekha Palriwala is literally the face of Indian community events in Greater Boston, volunteering, helping and whatever needs to done in order to make an event successful on the scene. It is her free service to the community. She has a professional life, too.

For the last 11 years, Palriwala has worked as an Editorial Assistant in the Physics Department of Northeastern University.  Prior to that Palriwala worked as a Network Administrator at Genuity, Inc. for 2 years and was the Administrative Assistant to the President of Bunker Hill Community College and the International Office for 10 years, while also being the Desktop Publisher for the college newspaper.  She is an artist and had taught drawing, painting and craft to children and adults for 6 years in India. After coming to the USA with her family 25 years ago, Palriwala often volunteers as a guardian for many students who come from India to study in the Boston area.

Palriwala has a Bachelor of Science degree in Home Science from Institute of Economics, Delhi.  She also has an Associate degree in Secretarial Course and a Certificate in Network Admin, Cisco and Unix.

woy-outstanding-logoINDIA New England: Please tell our readers about your work and what you enjoy most about it?

Rehka Palriwala: “Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile,” as said by Albert Einstein

After my children became independent adults, I felt the need to help and volunteer my time and efforts for others, particularly my community. I was already helping kids from India coming to US for further studies.  Over time, I reached out to various organizations and offered my help in whatever capacity required. Over these years, I have worked selflessly and with dedication with various organizations and at various events. Today, while many organizations reach out to me for assistance, I actively seek out organizations, many of which are non-profits, where I could volunteer.  You will usually find me at the front desk or backstage at events or in committees of various organizations, who often host large gatherings such as plays, musical shows, charity events.

While volunteering at different events I enjoy coming into contact with so many new people, making new friends, getting to know more of the community.  There are many people who appreciate my help. I feel happy to use my time in a productive manner.

From 20 years of working in an educational environment, I got to meet students and faculty from all over the world.  Taking care of their needs and seeing them happy and satisfied is the biggest reward of my work

Also, helping new students from India in this new setting and seeing them grow into “successful men” from “kids” brings lots of joy to me.

INE: To which charitable, community and professional group do you belong and why?

RP: The following are events/ organizations that I have been associated with in various capacities in more than 20 years:

Guardian and mentor to Kids from India – 20 Years

Maheshwari Mahasabha of North America (MMNA) Life Member & Chapter – President for 8 years

United India Association – Life Member & Secretary for 7 years

Hindi Manch – Core Venue Committee Member for 3 years

Swaraag – Core Committee member for 3 years

LearnQuest – volunteered full 3 days of Music Conference for 3 years

Nrityotsav – ticketing for 3 years

India Association of Greater Boston (IAGB) – different aspects

Ekal Vidyalaya – prepared food and volunteered in Fund Raiser

Vision Aid – Fund raiser

Pratham – Seating manager

Saheli – different aspects

Gurjar – ticketing

Walk for Hunger – 3 years – 20 miles walk – fund raise

Walk for Cancer – 2 years – 10 miles walk – fund raise

Sai Temple in Billerica, Lakshmi Temple in Ashland, Chinmaya Mission in Andover, Hare Ram Hare Krishna Temple in Boston – volunteer support for temple activities- prepared food.

Boston Desi Connection – repeat volunteer many times

Aap Ka Manoranjan

Dhoom Entertainment

Northeastern University – College Commencement volunteer – 2 years

Bunker Hill Community College – hosted cultural events

It makes me happy to help these organizations. It gives me a good feeling of utilizing my time. I also make new friends and get to socialize.

INE: What are your hobbies and interest?

RP: I love to assist people and socialize. I love going for long walks daily, listening to music, doing some gardening and I love cooking.

INE: In what way you feel you have most positively influenced or served the local community and your company/organization and professional field.

RP: I believe it is my respect for people, compassion for people, my dedication and positive attitude.  I go out of my way to help anyone in any manner I can. I do not consider that any job is below my dignity. I feel so appreciated when people tell me that no event is complete without my help.

In my work and professional field, I have the same attitude and am always willing to take up any job or project assigned to me.

INE: Your rare talent?

RP: Always have a positive attitude and smiling face when I interact with people, I cannot say no to anyone.

INE: Your favorite books?

RP: I am not a big fan of fiction or non-fiction books but religious and philosophical books and videos help me keep calm and composed. I listen to talks on videos by Sister Shivani.

INE: Your favorite quotes?

RP: “Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile”. Albert Einstein

“Talent is cheap; dedication is expensive. It will cost you your life.”

“Use your voice for kindness, your ears for compassion, your hands for charity, your mind for truth, and your Heart for Love”

“Treat everyone with Politeness, even those who are rude to you, not because they are nice, but because you are”

“Kind words never Die”

INE: Who inspires you the most?

RP: My mother was a big influence in my life growing up but now the people around me inspire me, they make me a better person every day. They are the ones who get the best out of me. You all inspire me to do better every day.

INE: Your core value you try to live by?

RP: Compassion and empathy.


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