ACTS OF KINDNESS
The Gupta Family Foundation is pleased to announce its first project for 2021! In honour of Shri Brahmrishi Gurudev ji’s birthday, The Foundation will be partnering with the Simbi Foundation to build solar-powered schools in Africa. This initiative will be launching in the Bidibidi Refugee Settlement in Uganda – working with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees to build and enhance four different schools across this settlement.
The Simbi Foundation builds many innovative solutions to enhance educational systems and allow developing countries to access modern technology. One of these solutions is the BrightBox – a remote, free-standing, solar-powered classroom that has been repurposed from a shipping container. These BrightBox classrooms have the capability of providing electricity and internet to an entire rural region, and also house several laptops for students to use in their studies. They also become a source of revenue generation for the region, as individuals can pay a nominal fee to charge their cell phone from the solar grid. The Simbi Foundation has also created the Simbi Learning Cloud – a cloud-based educational system that allows content to be uploaded via intranet.
The curriculum will also include teachings from Guru ji, which are all spiritual and educate students on the importance of leading a happier life. Reetu Gupta, President & CEO of The Gupta Family Foundation, says, “One of the most impactful teachings I learned from Guru ji is to live life with happiness, not for happiness. I want to spread this peace and this clarity to these children, hoping it will make them stronger and in turn provide them with better opportunities in life.”
“One of the most significant issues that school systems in developing countries face is a lack of access to technology,” says Suraj Gupta, Chief Strategy Officer of The Gupta Family Foundation. “Most schools have to rely on textbooks, which are expensive, difficult to source, and get out of date very quickly. Further, it is difficult to maintain a high ratio of textbooks to students in these communities. These BrightBox classrooms provide entire school complexes with laptops for student use, as well as a cloud-based educational system that can be updated very quickly, without any additional cost. Furthermore, these classrooms provide electricity to the community, and help these individuals access modern technology that they would otherwise have difficulty accessing.”
The Bidibidi Refugee Settlement is the second largest settlement of its kind in the world, with over 280,000 residents who have largely fled from South Sudan due to the ongoing conflict in the country. The Gupta Family Foundation and the Simbi Foundation have been working with the United Nations to optimize how many students in the settlement will have access to education and technology. “This technology has the ability to make a substantial impact in Uganda,” says Reetu. “Over 24,000 students will be positively impacted by this initiative, and the revenue that this project will generate for the community can fund future BrightBoxes every few years. It is a wonderful way to help these communities in a sustainable, climate-friendly fashion, to ensure that thousands of youth can access the education they deserve.”
Steve Gupta founded the family foundation three decades ago, undertaking many projects around the world and helping thousands of people through medical aid, disaster relief, clean water projects, and more. Reetu had a vision to bring more love and more life into the foundation, and she re-imagined and re-launched the Gupta Family Foundation in 2020. She has brought a new mandate to the foundation, and introduced its new mission - equality and empowerment through education and the satisfaction of basic needs.
This partnership with the Simbi Foundation will be the first of many projects coming from the Gupta Family Foundation this year, and these schools in the Bidibidi Refugee Settlement will be built and completed in the first half of 2021.
The Gupta Family Foundation & Simbi Foundation
Awaken Your Soul
2013 to 2019 - Toronto, Ontario
The Gupta Family Foundation has led the organization of Awaken Your Soul events with Shri Brahmrishi Guruvanand Ji Swamy, a spiritual leader whose sole purpose is to enlighten others. The Foundation has fully funded these events allowing free admission to its thousands of attendees. These events have been nationally televised to hundreds of thousands around the world on the Asian Television Network (ATN).
2017 - Andhra Pradesh, India
The Gupta Family Foundation is leading, developing and constructing a Meditation Centre for spiritual well being which will be located at the Shri Brahmrishi Guruvanand Ji Ashram in Tirupati, India. The centre is set to open in 2021.
Institute for Canadian Citizenship (ICC)
2012 to Present - Across Canada
In December 2012, Dr. Gupta pledged a total of $100,000 to the ICC, and the directors of The Gupta Family Foundation volunteer with the ICC to help lead their various initiatives. The organization is co-founded by the former Governor General of Canada The Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson, and supports ongoing initiatives to help integrate new citizens into Canadian society including leading events during citizenship ceremonies, development of the Cultural Access Pass, building Citizenship programs, and opening doors for Canada’s newest citizens to Canadian experiences, places and spaces.
Anand Bhavan Retirement Community
2010 - Richmond Hill, Ontario
In October 2010, Dr. Gupta built the first 25-suite Senior Residence geared towards the Indo-Canadian Community. This home is located in Richmond Hill, Ontario and operates with the Voice of Vedas organization.
Medical Eye Camps
1980 to 2005 - Punjab, India
For the past 25 years, Dr. Gupta has developed and funded five Medical Eye Camps a year in India. These camps provide complete eye care for the under privileged in rural villages of India. The camps provide a complete eye exam, corrective glasses, medication as well as cataract detection and removal surgery. Food is also provided at these camps. Over the past 25 years, over 11,000 people have been treated and cured.
Clean Water & Sanitation Project
2004 - Rajasthan, India
In collaboration with the Rotary Club of Toronto and the Rotary Club of the World, Dr. Gupta funded a complete Sanitation Project in the province of Rajasthan, India. A Girls School with 500 students did not have water nor did it have a sanitary waste disposal system. This 1.2 million Rupee project provided the school with complete washroom facilities and running water.
Earthquake Relief Efforts
2001 - Gujurat, India
Dr. Gupta sat as Co-chair of fundraising efforts for the earthquake-stricken people in the state of Gujarat, India. The Gupta Family Foundation worked alongside several television stations (ATN, AsiaNet and CFMT), and with the federal Minister for International Co-Operation, and also held a candlelight vigil at Nathan Phillips Square to raise funds for this tragedy
The Gupta Family Foundation fully funded a private birthing unit for the Centenary Hospital; complete with all furniture and equipment. The foundation also sponsored the acquisition of a full incubator for premature babies and had these funds for the hospital matched by the Government of Canada.
1985 - Punjab, India
Dr. Gupta funded and constructed a complete 20 bed ward in the Aggarwal Hospital located in Patiala, Punjab, India.