Where did it all begin?
Leherein was born not just as a thought, but as an aspiration, a dream, a mission!
In the beginning we were just a fun-loving dance group who would choreograph dance numbers for all ages to be performed at the local cultural events. To show the appreciation to our efforts the participants would want to give us some gifts. Instead of gifts for us we requested them to donate the amount towards orphanages in India.
This was a win-win situation wherein we did what we loved and ended up raising funds for a cause close to our heart. Little did we realize then that this will be our first step to Leherein’s journey of making a small difference in the world.
If there is anything we love as much as dancing, it’s cooking! In January 2001, after the earthquake in Gujarat, we swung into action and raised whooping $ 2500 by cooking for the fund raiser for earthquake relief.
And when we heard of the Kashmir earthquake, we did the same – this time with our earnings from dance classes
As our efforts grew, so did our dreams.
The dream was to start an orphanage in India for less fortunate children so that they grow up in a loving and caring home with a good education. Even though we are based in Boston, we made India our karmabhoomi because this is where we had grown up and we realized that since dollar goes a long way in India, we can have a wider impact with limited funds there.
And thus, began our long and at times frustrating journey to realizing our dream.It took few vexing years of maneuvering a labyrinth of bureaucracy and misinformation. These endless obstacles often bogged us down, but we never lost sight of our dream. We refused to follow the numerous “under the table” tactics, suggested by government officials and kept an unshakeable faith in ourselves through this difficult time.
During our journey in pursuit of our dream, we met many people. Some were like us – with the intention to do something good and others, well not so much!
One of the fondest success stories of this journey is when we were able to provide a temporary housing for girls who were studying then in class 10. These girls would travel long miles everyday to attend their school. Their study time was taken away by the time spent in the travel. To help them, we put together a housing facility near their school.The housing provided the girls with a comfortable place to live, nutritious meals every day, and above all time to study and succeed.
We reached yet another milestone in 2010. With the tremendous help and support of many like-minded people we were able to start “Abhal Maya” (“abhal” means sky and “maya” means love in Marathi language) – a loving home for ten children who lived in villages. Apart from the love, care and nutrition that they deserve, we also supported the education of these children for two years.