President Biden, AmeriCorps Honor Philanthropist Arun Gandhi with Lifetime Achievement Award
Indian American businessman Arun Gandhi was recently honored with the President’s Lifetime Achievement Award, given with recognition from AmeriCorps and the office of the President of the United States for “lifelong commitment to building a stronger nation through volunteer service.” (photo provided)
By REENA RATHORE
ANAHEIM, CA – Success means different things to different people. For Indian American businessman and philanthropist Arun Gandhi, the essence of a successful life lies in the ability to give back to the community. And for his extraordinary philanthropic and volunteer commitments, Gandhi recently received one of the nation’s highest civilian honors.
Gandhi was awarded the President’s Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his more than 5,000 hours of volunteer service and leadership. His award came with a congratulatory letter from President Joe Biden, a certificate, and a medallion.
The award, which is administered by AmeriCorps, the federal agency for national service and volunteerism, honors individuals whose service positively impacts communities in every corner of the nation and inspires others to act.
“By sharing your time and passion, you are helping discover and deliver solutions to the challenges we face – solutions that we need now more than ever. We are living in a moment that calls for hope and light and love. Hope for our futures, light to see our way forward, and love for one another. Through your service, you are providing all three,” President Biden said in an official letter.
“On behalf of the American people, I extend my heartfelt appreciation to you for your volunteer leadership and I encourage you to continue to answer the call to serve. The country is counting on you,” he added.
Gandhi is the founder of the International Institute of Solutions, a self-funded and solution-focused non-profit organization that has created several initiatives for the advancement and empowerment of individuals from numerous socio-economic backgrounds in India and the U.S. It focuses on a multitude of areas, namely food, shelter, hygiene, poverty alleviation via work schemes, wellness, mental health, and financial freedom.
To elevate the art of giving to a higher level, Gandhi has also created The Panacea Project which focuses on solutions and positivity, helping people develop individualized lifelong skills for mental, physical, professional, and monetary well-being. Gandhi envisioned the platform as a space where individuals could gather to discover innovative solutions in the fields of health and wellness, financial prosperity, knowledge and innovation.
To help farmers in drought-stricken areas of India, Gandhi is also promoting hydroponic farming – the technique of growing plants using a water-based nutrient solution rather than soil. The pilot project aims to train about 100 farmers in the technique, and cover all of their expenses for a year so that they can grow high-value crops like edible mushrooms and microgreens which Gandhi’s organization will then buy back.
IIS acquired Discount Hydroponics which is now called CreatorHydro and is in the process of acquiring other companies in order to promote IIS and its mission.
Despite being born into an affluent family and growing up with advantages and privileges, the Indian-born engineer was always led by his desire to forge new opportunities for people by sharing resources, knowledge, and value.
Working as a trainee for Tata Group and then his own leather goods export company in India, Gandhi moved to the U.S. in 1985. Embracing the work ethic in the U.S. as a challenge and opportunity, Gandhi went from a relatively relaxed life to working 24/7 on multiple endeavors and eventually founded his own startup in 1990 called Inventory Professionals. As his company and profits grew, Gandhi devoted himself to volunteerism and set out to create an organization that would spring from “the power of giving.”
For more information, visit panaceaproject.com and iisusa.org.