An Evening With Local Non Profit Organizations
Report By Zeb
November 30th 2001
Cupertino: Over a hundred people gathered to hear a half dozen non-profit organizations working for the uplift of Pakistan and Muslims make their case and describe their efforts at a networking event organized at the Cupertino Community Library by Koshish Foundation, a local non-profit organization working to improve and expand the quality of engineering education and practice in South Asia.
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The event included presentations by Koshish, The International Organization of Pakistani Women Engineers, Net-Edu, OPEN [The Organization of Pakistani Entrepreneurs] Silicon Valley Chapter, Hidaya Foundation, Rahima Foundation, and a representative of the Sir Syed University Islamabad.
Ambassador Toheed Ahmed, the Government of Pakistan’s representative in Silicon Valley, also spoke to the audience. The presentations were followed by a light meal and music by “Sawaz,” an up-and-coming local musical group. Ambassador Toheed Ahmed is the Consul General of Pakistan for IT development. A career Foreign Service officer for the last 30 years, Mr. Ahmed’s last assignment was as Pakistan’s Ambassador to another home of high technology - Singapore. His objective is to connect high-tech American companies to their counterparts in Pakistan.
OPEN -- the Organization of Pakistani Entrepreneurs -- is a non-profit organization with a charter to provide networking opportunities for Pakistani entrepreneurs and professionals in the high-tech industry. OPEN was formed by a group of Pakistani-American entrepreneurs in the Boston area. The Silicon Valley Chapter was formed very recently with Mr. Salman Akhtar, who made the presentation at the event, as Secretary and Mr. Umair Khan, founder of Clickmarks, as Treasurer.
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IOPWE - the International Organization of Pakistani Women Engineers -- is an organization whose members have been diligently working to dispel the myths surrounding the role of Pakistani women in our society. IOPWE was represented by its founder, Ms. Farhana Sheikh, and Ms Nabiha Muaiyyedi.
Net-Edu is an organization whose charter is to promote life-long learning through technical education. Net-Edu’s objective is to promote Chip Design and High Speed Board Design technology in Pakistan. Net-Edu was represented by Mr. Shahid Khan.
Rahima Foundation was founded to help the needy, the less fortunate and those requiring assistance, to take care of their immediate needs and to help them get back on their feet. They primarily work in the Bay Area and were represented at the event by Mr. Owais Anjum.
Hidaya organization is working for social welfare and the education of the less privileged children in Pakistan; it was represented by Mr. Waseem Baloch
The Sir Syed University Islamabad will be a center of excellence in Islamabad offering undergraduate and graduate academic programs in Ethics, Computer Science, Computer Engineering and Telecommunications. It was represented by Dr. Erfan Ebrahim.
Koshish Foundation (www.koshish.org) is a non-profit organization that promotes education-related projects in South Asia with emphasis on technology transfer and technical education.
Its projects include a Mentorship Program for engineering students in South Asia, the establishment of Resource Centers for technical professionals and students, and the eventual creation of Centers of Technology and Engineering Excellence. An introduction to Koshish was made by Mr. Rehan Jalil.