LOS ANGELES (Diya TV) – Rahul Arjun John Yates, an 11-year-old Indian-American middle school student from Souther California recently used his graduation party as a platform to fundraise for underserved students who attend schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District.
To celebrate Yates elementary school graduation, his parents hosted a Bollywood-themed dance party, at which the boy asked attendees make donations to the Quiet Time program in lieu of gifts. The kid’s efforts should truly be commended, as such thoughtfulness from a boy so young is rarely found these days. He could go on and carry out further fundraising events with help from different organizations, and in today’s digital age, the power of online fundraising can also be easily leveraged to encourage people from all over the world to contribute and make a difference in these children’s lives. Lynn Kaplan, director of the David Lynch Foundation in Los Angeles, said, “This is the first time that a young child has held a fundraiser for the Quiet Time program. The event raised over $1,000, which will be used to teach the Transcendental Meditation technique through the Quiet Time program to underserved students.”
A few years ago, Yates completed a child’s course in Transcendental Meditation. It was then that he began meditating with Los Angeles’ underserved schoolchildren on a regular basis.
Several of the students come from broken homes and live in gang-ridden neighborhoods where crime is a part of everyday life. The children suffer from anxiety, behavioral issues, depression and inability to concentration, which in turn results in their poor academic performances.
Yates began spending time with the children, and listened to them explain how the Quiet Time program benefits their personal growth and academic goals – multiple studies have shown the program results in significant reductions in stress and anxiety, improving their interpersonal relationships and increasing their self-esteem and performance at school.
His mother, Punita Khanna, said, “Since Rahul is an Indian American biracial boy, it was important to select a charity that reflected his being. Though Rahul has visited India a few times, he has little direct connection with the country.
“My father immigrated to the U.S. over 50 years ago, so I was raised seeing my parents’ strong familial ties to India. However, I don’t have any. With my husband being Caucasian, Rahul’s roots are here.
“We contribute to non-profit organizations that serve the poor and/or uneducated in India but in teaching Rahul about philanthropy, it made sense to seek a charity that is meaningful to him.â