The community has been raising funds for education for 16 years!
The Sikh Human Development Foundation (SHDF) in Washington, USA has been working towards the education of underprivileged children in India, and has provided scholarships worth ₹12 crore since 2001!
The foundation provides scholarships to students who are academically brilliant but cannot afford to pursue higher education. Although the SHDF focuses on children from Punjab, they also extend assistance to the youth in neighbouring areas.
“The SDHF has so far given more than 5,000 scholarships to students. 2,700 students have graduated and found jobs, and some of them are now helping other needy children” Gajinder Ahuja, the chairman of SDHF told Times Now.
One such beneficiary of the fund is Jasdeep Singh Juneja, who is an IT professional. He now works at ATT in Dallas, Texas.
Juneja says, “I would not have been in the US, had SHDF not helped me out. My family was not able to support me, and it is only because of financial assistance at a very crucial time that I was able to become a professional. Now I can support the education of my own younger brother.”
You may also like: Sikh Volunteers Feed Thousands of Rohingya Refugees Langar in Bangladesh!
There are numerous people like Juneja who have benefitted from the funds collected and distributed by the SDHF. A media release confirmed that the participants in the latest event by the SDHF donated funds for 420 scholarships worth more than ₹32,000 each. The event also featured actor and comedian Gurpreet Ghuggi.
Education is certainly a priceless gift and the Sikh community in Washington is providing an invaluable service to underprivileged youth in Punjab. The youth can now pursue higher education in the stream they wish to take up, and in turn, once they acquire jobs, can continue the cycle of helping other children.