01 November 2008

Art with a Smile, India on Canvas

Under the patronage of Her Royal Highness Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein, Wife of HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE, Ruler of Dubai, Khushii (Kinship for Humanitarian, Social and Holistic Intervention in India), a leading NGO from India, has partnered with Al Noor Centre for Special Needs Children to stage ‘Art with a smile, India on Canvas,’ an art charity auction with a difference. The event, making its debut in Dubai, will be held on November 28th, 2008 at the Madinat Jumeirah.

‘Art with a Smile’ will pair renowned achievers from different walks of life with successful and talented artists from the sub-continent and the UAE to jointly create a customised piece of art that will then be auctioned. Proceeds from the auction will be jointly shared between Khushii and the Al Noor Centre, and will be utilized in the areas of health, education and empowerment.

The auction, to be conducted by Christies, will include a special presentation by globally renowned pianist Richard Clayderman for a select audience. Al Naboodah Automobiles, Audi and Dubai First have confirmed their support towards the novel event.

“Khushii and Al Noor have taken this step together as the first initiative towards Khushii’s global vision to create the world‘s first NGO forum that will provide aid to areas affected by global calamities. Khushii has always had the drive to fulfil our vision of a just and equitable social order through the provision of sustainable livelihood,” commented Kapil Dev, Chairman of Khushii.

Up to 60 pieces of art along with a specially commissioned Audi A4 and a Murano from Ajmal will be auctioned during the event. Some of the biggest names in the global art fraternity along with leading eminent personalities, including Bollywood celebrities, senior government officials and leading industrialists have joined hands for this noble cause. Some of the pairings include Abdullah Shaibani and Masab Al Rais, Tamjid Abdullah and Hasna Abubaker, H.E. Sheikha Lubna and Mohammed Qassab, Dr. Ram Buxani and Suvaprasana, and K. Rajaram and Sanjay Bhattacharya.

Mr. Khalid Al Halyan, Chairman of Al Noor, said: “We are delighted to be supporting Khushii, an organization that works towards improving the lives of the underprivileged and less fortunate. ‘Art with a Smile’ will be an effective catalyst in bridging the gap between various segments of the society, bringing them towards a common cause of global concern and reaffirming the power of the individual and the perseverance of the human spirit.”

“In times like these, where practically anything is possible, it is our responsibility as human beings to strive for the greater good of human kind. We must do what we can for the wellbeing of people of all ages, genders and races. Adopting initiatives that fulfil our creative desires and give us an opportunity to give back to society is just a small step toward creating awareness and support for global causes,” said Vandana Luthra, President of Khushii.

The event has generated a lot of interest and excitement in the previous editions, attracting various luminaries from Bollywood and the corporate world including Amitabh Bahchan, Jaya Bachan, Ratan Tata, Sunil Mittal, Vijay Mallya, Abhishek Bachan, Tina Ambani and Ritu Kumar, among others.

Khushii has already set the road map to begin a new chapter in Dubai in support of its charitable ventures in India & world over. Since its establishment in 2003, Khushii has contributed to health care, sustainability, rural development, remedial education, care for the aged, and investment in government infrastructure.

The Al Noor Centre for Children with Special Needs opened its doors on the 21st of November 1981, helping eight children. Today the centre takes care of 220 children with special needs. Its goal is to integrate its students into society and equip them with important life skills.

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