Top 5 couples in Philanthropy
It is often said that South Asians are less philanthropic than their Western counterparts, although this is both erroneous and misleading. There are over 180,000 charities in the UK raising £64 billion in charitable revenue. There are nearly a 1 million Trustees, 3,7 million volunteers and 900,000 people directly employed in the third sector. The Top 5 Asian Power Couples for Philanthropy in 2018 – who play a significant part in creating and funding charitable organisations, not for profits and NGOs – are Simon and Shalni Arora, Surinder & Sunita Arora, Apurv & Alka Bagri, Zeenat Noon Harnal & Arun Harnal and Thembalath & Sreedevi Ramachandran.
Top 5 Asian Power Couples for Philanthropy 2018
Presented in alphabetical order by surname
Simon & Shalni Arora are Patrons of The British Asian Trust (BAT) with Shalni being a member of the BAT North Chapter. Simon Arora is CEO of the retail chain B&M, run jointly with his brothers brothers Bobby and Robin, and Shalni Arora is the founder Savannah Wisdom, an independent foundation committed to social change for a better world. Hotelier Surinder Arora and his wife Sunita Arora set-up The Arora Charitable Foundation which so far has contributed over £1,500,000 to good causes. The Foundation organises the Arora Ball each year to raise funds for the underprivileged, particularly in education and healthcare.
Apurva and Alka Bagri, through The Bagri Foundation, supported the launch of ‘Illuminating India’ at the Science Museum, as part of the UK India Year of Culture, and continue their lead sponsorship of the London Indian Film Festival which celebrates the best of independent Indian cinema. Zeenat Noon Harnal (pictured above) has been Managing Director of Bombay Halwa Limited since August 18, 2017. She was a Trustee of the Noon Foundation from 2001 until March 2016 and has recently become a Trustee of the The Noon Memorial Legacy Trust set up in honour of her late father Lord Gulam Noon. She is also the Managing Trustee of the Noon Hospital which is her father’s legacy to the people of Rajasthan in memory of his beloved mother and is sponsored by his charity, Zeen-Zar Charitable Foundation Trust. Arun Harnal has been running the Taj Group’s iconic Bombay Brasserie restaurant for over 20 years.
Thembalath & Sreedevi Ramachandran are newcomers to the Top 5 Couples in Philanthropy, but with the support of their company Bristol Laboratories, which had turnover in excess of £100 million to March 31, 2016 and has its sights set on the OTC (over the counter) segment and European markets via its subsidiary in Spain, it is hoped that the newly-formed charity T Ramachandran Trust, of which Sreedevi Ramachandran is a Director, will have significant funds at its disposal for advancing education and medical research in the UK and in India.