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News

Eternal Gandhi Museum in Houston receives $457,000 grant

The proposed Eternal Gandhi Museum in Houston

By: Pramod Thomas

THE Eternal Gandhi Museum in Houston has received a grant of $475,000 from Fort Bend County under the American Rescue Plan. The facility is expected to open in 2023.

The aid will help to complete the construction of the first museum in the US dedicated to preserve and promote Mahatma Gandhi’s legacy and ideals, reported PTI.

The ground-breaking ceremony for the museum was held on July 3 this year. Congressman Al Green was the chief guest at the function with a host of other dignitaries and members of Houston’s local community also participated.

“The Eternal Gandhi Museum Houston is delighted and truly grateful to the Fort Bend County Commissioners’ court for approving this grant,” volunteer, trustee and co-founder Atul B Kothari said.

The grant was announced during a press conference on Wednesday (29) evening by Fort Bend County judge of Indian-origin KP George along with the county commissioners.

“Indian-American Fort Bend County judge K P George has offered unflinching support to the activities of the Museum from day one, when he was invited to the memorial service for Mahatma Gandhi in February 2019 at the Unity of Houston. This grant will go a long way in bringing to life the first-ever museum in the US dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi,” Kothari explained.

The Museum has acquired 3 acres of land in southwest Houston to house the museum. The proposed budget for construction is $6.5 million. The proceeds from the capital campaign have touched $2.9 million, with the board of trustees committing another $1.1 million.

The trust has also secured another $0.8 million from private donor commitments. Recently, the Houston Endowment Foundation also awarded a capital grant of $500,000.

A concerted fundraising campaign is currently underway through foundations, corporations and private donors to raise the remaining amount.

The Museum will also include exhibits and interpretations that highlight the mission and vision of Mahatma Gandhi.

“The Museum will invite school children from surrounding areas for a field trip for free. It will be divided into three sections: ‘His Journey’ (Mahatma Gandhi’s Life), ‘Our Journey’ (Impact of Mahatma Gandhi’s legacy of nonviolent conflict resolution in the world featuring, Dr Martin Luther King Jr., Nelson Mandela and others around the world, and finally ‘My Journey’ where each visitor will be asked to make a commitment to make the community a better place to live in,” Kothari said.

Eastern Eye

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