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Creativity | Thaakat Foundation

Spice Up Your Fundraising!

Posted by on Saturday, March 3, 2012 in Hira T. Khan

By: Hira T. Khan | Keeper of the Blog | Thaakat Foundation
Full disclosure: The prospect of fundraising has always made me cringe.

I know that every charity spends a considerable amount of its resources on raising money for various projects, but as integral as fundraising is to charity work, it has always been my least favorite part. I think I am finally beginning to understand why.

When I was young, fundraising meant lemonade stands and bake sales, you know, the regular standbys. I lived by the motto that only someone without a soul could resist the temptation of sugary goodness. But then, in college, when I began my four-year-long relationship with Northwestern University’s Dance Marathon (NUDM), fundraising meant canning in the cold at basketball games and writing solicitation letters to friends, family, and everyone you had ever known.
Basically, different stages in my life offered different specifications for exactly how you should fundraise. It was these specifications that made the entire process rather…boring. What I needed was a way to spice up my fundraising options.
Now don’t get me wrong, these tried and true methods of fundraising were effective, but when everyone starts doing the same things to raise money, it becomes harder to generate interest in your cause. This is why you need to get creative.
Here are some ways others have gotten creative:
– In college, the organic chemistry lab professor was well-known for his no-nonsense attitude. To raise money and awareness for NUDM, a freshman interrupted this professor’s lecture dressed in a chicken suit and dancing the chicken dance! When he finally got fed up with the prank, the professor jumped over a lab bench and tackled the guy as he ran out the door.
– This year for NUDM, one dancer promised to get his eyebrows professionally done if he raised $500, shave them off if he raised $1000, and shave only one if he raised $1500. By the looks of things right now, he will be getting them professionally done. I hear he’ll be posting a video of the event!
– St. Baldrick’s Foundation holds events around the country where people shave their heads to raise money to help kids with cancer. To date, over 189,660 volunteers – including 17,200 women – have shaved their heads for the cause.
How will YOU get creative?
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Bollywood Night: A Fantastic Success!

Posted by on Sunday, March 13, 2011 in Uzma Bawany

As we sat in traffic outside of the Holland tunnel I kept watching our GPS in anticipation of the miles to get closer to our desitination. Today was the day for Jaqueline Kennedy Highschool’s Bollywood Night, a Charity Benefit for Thaakat Foundation.
The make you want to LOL MC’s
We finally arrived just in time and as we rushed up the stairs we saw posters on some fast facts of poverty around the globe, confetti and colors brimming our way to the top and the tone of music surreptitiously getting louder and louder.
We entered the doors to the event to see a young girl decorating hands with henna, trays of food lining the hallway and a wonderful group of kids trying to convince spectators to buy threads of raffle tickets.
Ms. Jane Valit, Puja Patel and Kristin Damo worked tirelessly with the National Honor Society at the school to arrange the event. Not only were they able to arrange for donations of food but they had the best line up of raffle items I had ever seen. From dazzling Tiffany jewelry to NHL gift cards- the group had arranged for more than 20 spectacular items to gift away at the end of the night.
jaqueline kennedy onassis highschool
The lovely staff who made it happen
The room was brimming with talent. Long time Thaakat friend, DJ Flawless had volunteered to own the music behind his turntables and kept the aura upbeat and fun.
Two young boys served as MC’s for the evening and their work was seamless, and so harmonic with one another. As each dance performance began everyone’s eyes followed the eclectic colors, clothing and moves which followed. As each student poet spoke, we listened to what we felt was so profound, so deep, so rhythmic. The band was mesmerizing, the organization was wonderful and we were just so thankful to the staff and students who arranged for this.
I have never been so nervous to speak in front of any crowd as I was on this day. The confidence that was exude from these students as they performed this evening was so enlightening and I felt that I must also step up my game to be on par.
The Jaqueline Kennedy Onassis Highschool NHS, students, staff and volunteers were able to raise $1500 for charity in the name of Thaakat Foundation. I cannot begin to share my pride in the work they have done. Thank you so much!
I know that this group of students will all be so successful one day in pursuing their dreams. I hope this was an opportunity for each one of them to carry with them into their successful futures this noble effort they have made for the betterment of our local and global communities. Keep on Keepin’ on!
Peace Love and Thaakat.
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Jaqueline Kennedy Highschool Presents: “Bollywood Night”- A Charity Benefit for Thaakat Foundation

Posted by on Sunday, February 27, 2011 in Uzma Bawany

As I entered the classroom to present to these young bright eyed individuals, I felt inspired by all of the ideas, diversity and vision that was around me. After I shared a little bit about how THAAKAT began and what our goals were for the future, I went on to share why community service was so important.
To my content, many of these students raised their hands to share with me how community service had been such a moral lifter for them. Some of them came to me for advice on how they could incorporate service to the community into their professinal career aspirations.
This Thursday March 3, 2011 the National Honor Society at Jaqueline Kennedy Highschool will be hosting a benefit where all proceeds will be donated to Thaakat Foundation’s local and global causes for 2011. The night will be decorated with colors, music performances and dancing with a feature presenation by DJ Flawless! As the students round up preparations, THAAKAT had the opportunity to talk to Puja Patel about what has been going on behind the scenes. Puja is a supporting member on Thaakat and teacher at the highschool. She been working non stop with the team these last few months to ensure the experience is a wonderful one for the students.
Why did you feel it was important to get the kids at Jaqueline Kennedy Highschool involved?
We have a great community service program and a lot of the kids don’t actually realize what is going outside of the city, especially in countries that are developing. When the topic first came up, the kids referenced slum dog millionaire, which is kind of neat that we’re getting media to showcase realities around the world. But I wanted them to realize this was real especially because it’s a school for international careers so it would be good to raise awareness with the kids.
How does the NHS team at Jaqueline Kennedy Highschool feel about the event, with it being less than a week away?
They are nervous but they just want to see what the outcome is going to be. They are excited about new people coming to visit the school to see how they react to what the team has been working on.
How is this different than other things the school has done?
Most of the things that we do with the school is based on local institutions and events. Though we do a lot of community service events, we’ve gone beyond that to do something that is also diverse.
Why Thaakat?
I feel like when I joined the team, the answer was always yes. I was really encouraged by all of the team’s positivity towards events and ideas. When Thaakat first came in to present, you guys told them to expand their ideas and inspired them beyond just what Thaakat’s vision was. It really motivates them to grow.
What has been the best part about organizing this event so far?
This is the first time the kids have gone out to businesses to talk to people in a professional setting. To get to watch the kids reach out to a community on an executive level with such confidence really made me feel great about everything.
Click here for the Facebook Event Invitation and details
To the students and staff helping to arrange the event, we are all really looking forward to this! A special thanks to  Jane Valit, Kristin Damo, and Puja Patel.
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NNR Remix/11th Annual Dance Competition

Posted by on Friday, January 28, 2011 in Uncategorized

Explosive performances you don’t want to miss!!
This year Muqabla will be supporting the Andrew McDonough B+ Foundation
Visit the link and donate:
8 Extraordinary Teams
3 Intense Rounds
14+ Thrilling performances
1 Undisputed Champion
1 Spectacular Night
University of Delaware Indian Student Association (ISA) and (DDT) present the 11th annual Muqabla dance competition. This year’s title is Muqabla: NNR Remix. Muqabla has adopted DDT’s NNR format which is a Bollywood-Fusion dance tournament. The only one of its kind and extremeley entertaining.
Saturday | Feb 26th, 2011
Doors Open @ 4:00 PM | Show starts @ 4:30 PM
Mitchell Hall at University of Delaware Campus
S College Ave & Amstel Ave
Newark, DE 19713
$10 – UD Students (w/ UD college ID)
$15 – Regular admission
$20 – VIP
UD tickets can ONLY be purchased on campus. Email us at to get your ticket now! or call an ISA Rep:
Chandni Patel – 302.668.8238
Jay Parikh – 302.354.9085
Jeet Mukherjee – 215.359.7943
Punya Sethi – 516.232.5822
Regular and VIP tickets are available online until Feb 12th, 2011. After Feb. 12th, 2011 please email us at to purchase tickets.
Master of Ceremony:
Patrick SHOCK
Pearl SHAH
Nithin PAUL Participants:
University of California Los Angeles NASHAA
Rutgers Univeristy SAPA
Boston University JALWA
Stony Brook University KHATRA
Penn State University JADHOOM
University of Maryland DHOOM
St John University RAAZ
Exhibition Acts:
University of Delaware KAMAAL (Fusion)
Melee Mitraan DE (Bhangra)
University of Delaware HEARTBEATZ (Beatbox)
Website: and
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