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Kavita Marballi of the INDO-US Chamber of Commerce receives a $340 check from Dover Elementary School students for UNICEF’s Tsunami Relief Fund.
A WAVE OF COMPASSION
By ARUN MARBALLI

Dover Elementary School in eastern Hillsborough County, a school with a student population comprising almost entirely of children from migrant farm worker families, wanted to give back for all the help they have received during the holidays and the hurricanes. These are the same families that INDO-US Chamber of Commerce (INDOUS) has sponsored every year for a Thanksgiving Day dinner. Children who had frequently been at the receiving end of donations were instead giving back.

Led by Brienna and her group of classmates – Andrew Lovelica, Jessica Ramos, Tanya Smibs and Katrina Guiterrez -- the school was festooned with numerous posters kicking off a fundraising campaign, the likes of which the school had never before seen. The fundraising effort began with a parents meeting and a televised Morning Show address in which Kalavati Patel, wife of immediate past INDOUS Chairman Prativ Patel, explained to the children how the money collected would be used to help the children affected by the tsunami.

In the two-week drive that followed, the 10- and 11-year-old students raised $340 and presented the check to INDOUS Executive Committee member Kavita Marballi in early February for UNICEF’s Tsunami Relief Fund.

The INDO-US Chamber of Commerce is a business organization established for serving the common business interest of and to improve the business conditions of Indian enterprise by providing professionals with information and networking opportunities. The chamber has been in existence for more than five years and has a membership of about 1,300.

Arun Marballi is the secretary of the INDO-US Chamber of Commerce (www.indo-us.org) in Tampa.
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