During the COVID-19 pandemic, I wanted to do something meaningful with my free time. With all the volunteering services being closed, I didn’t have a lot of options. One day, my mom mentioned an email from Gopal-mam, president of Konkani Charitable Fund. My family was familiar with this organization because my aunt, Shalini Pai(a KCF hero), has been involved with them for quite some time. The email stated that our brethren needed help back in India as a result of the pandemic. I thought, why not appeal to our local Konkani association, Michkon, for donations. I shared this idea with my friend, Tanvi Mallya, and we both agreed to start a GoFundMe. We started off with a modest goal of $500 and little did we know that we would exceed this amount within a few days. And so we raised our goal to $1,000 and soon, even that was exceeded. We were ecstatic that our family and friends were so generous with their contributions. As we hit $1,500, Tanvi and I began to contact other Konkani associations across the country and around the world. The money kept increasing and our friends kept donating. $2,447 has been raised on the GoFundMe, alone, and $500 was sent directly to KCF in our names. In total, we have collected $2,997. The president of KCF was so impressed with work done by these two teenagers that he donated a matching amount of $ 3003 to make total donation to $6000.
Donations will be used for any number of necessities, including medical care, especially for Konkanis living in rural areas of India. These are the places that need the most attention as economic inequality is the greatest here. The need is even greater now as India has the third largest number of COVID-19 cases in the world. If after reading this, you would like to contribute, please donate to KCF and help Gopal-mam further his cause. We are extremely proud of the money we raised and we can’t wait to hear the help it’ll bring to Konkanis.
Amay Kamath is a high school senior living in the suburbs of Detroit, Michigan with high hopes for the future. His favorite things to do are to watch Bollywood movies with his family, hang out with friends, read a good book, and travel to other countries around the world. At school, Amay is a part of the STEM Biomedical academy. He is also the captain of his high school’s swim team as well as a varsity athlete. Amay is the secretary and co-founder of the PCEP American Red Cross club, a member of his school’s Congress(student government), and a volunteer at his local hospital. Amay works at Kumon as tutor and enjoys helping kids. He’s also helping his mom raise her second Future Leader Dog for the Blind. In college, Amay would like to major in pre-med or biology and go on to medical school to become a doctor.
Tanvi Mallya is a current high school senior attending Salem High school in Canton, MI. She is part of the biomedical STEM program at her school and has hopes of pursuing a career in the biomedical field. Throughout the years, Tanvi has consistently volunteered at the humane society, food ministry, and blood drives. To continue her passion for volunteering and spread the opportunity to others, Tanvi co-founded an American Red Cross club at her school in which she organized various fundraisers, raising money for Australian wildfires, measles & rubella vaccinations, and more. In addition, Tanvi is part of the varsity pom team at her school and has been a part of the team for 4 years. When she is not practicing or working, Tanvi enjoys cooking, spending time with friends, and listening to music.