NEW YORK, NEW YORK – On October 7, The Sankara Eye Foundation (SEF) held its 2nd annual Be The Light Gala at Cipriani 25 Broadway in Manhattan. The event raised $1.4 million, with the proceeds going to help the organization attain its goal to eliminate curable blindness in India.
Philanthropist and Gala Co-Chair Mohan Wanchoo set the stage for the evening with a speech underscoring the critical significance of SEF’s ongoing efforts to eliminate curable blindness in India. Murali Krishnamurthy, Gala Co-Chair, Founder, and Executive Chairman of SEF, USA, then took the stage to share an intimate anecdote about his recent experience undergoing eye surgery, expertly performed at one of SEF’s twelve hospitals in India. His decision to entrust his own vision to the skilled hands of SEF’s medical team emphasized not only his belief in the organization’s capabilities, but also his deep personal commitment to the cause.
Mr. Krishnamurthy went on to note the organization’s remarkable achievements thus far. He shared stories of lives being transformed, and showcased the tangible difference SEF has made. He then outlined SEF’s ambitious plans for the future: to provide one million free eye surgeries annually by 2030 and to eventually eliminate curable blindness in India entirely.
A keynote speech was given by Jay Chaudhry, CEO, Chairman and Founder, Zscaler Inc. He recounted his transformative journey from his humble beginnings in India to becoming a successful figure in the corporate realm in the U.S.
The generosity of the attendees was palpable, echoing the sentiments of Mr. Chaudhry, whose $1 million donation set the tone for the evening. Additional contributions poured in, including $100,000 from Mr. Wanchoo, as other philanthropists pledged their support.
Entertainment was provided by 2010 Indian Idol finalist and 2011 X Factor India finalist, Geetesh Iyer, as well as Indian-American band The Incident!. Uniquely blending Indian sounds with diverse world music styles to create a fusion of classical and modern melodies, the band has shared stages with iconic artists like Indian Ocean and Shaan.
For more information on SEF, or to donate, call 1 (866) SANKARA (726-5272) or visit www.giftofvision.org
About Sankara Eye Foundation
Sankara Eye Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing free eye surgeries to those experiencing blindness or other visual impairments across India. The organization relies on donations to eliminate curable blindness, performing eye surgeries for only $30 USD. Sankara performed 355,000 eye surgeries last fiscal year and has built the capacity to perform 490,000 this year. By 2030, the organization hopes to reach their “March to a Million” goal of performing one million free eye surgeries annually. For more information, visit www.giftofvision.org.