New Delhi : Smile Foundation presented the 2nd edition of its sensitization cum fund raising initiative “Cook for a Smile”, which was co-presented by Cleo County and endorsed and supported by three times Michelin Starred Chef Vikas Khanna. The event was hosted by Hyatt Regency. 11 top boardroom leaders joined this initiative to battle it out over a cook-off to ensure that cause wins. Funds raised through the campaign will be utilized in providing education and nutrition for 1000 children of Smile Foundation with the mission 'Nutrition for Better Literacy'.
Elaborating on his fondness for the initiative Chef Vikas Khanna, Goodwill Ambassador – Nutrition for Better Literacy, Smile Foundation, said, “Lack of proper nutrition is a fundamental issue and one of the biggest roadblocks in the growth and development of children in our country. I am proud to be associated with Smile Foundation as their Goodwill Ambassador for Nutrition for Better Literacy and I hope I am able to sensitize many more people about this issue that faces us as a developing country. Cook for a Smile has been a big step in helping us reach out to stakeholders and by end of this year I pledge to benefit around 5000 kids through this initiative.”
Corporate leaders took a day off to don the Chef’s toques with one mission of providing ‘Nutrition for Better Literacy’ which would benefit the children of Smile Foundation across India. Chef Vikas Khanna divided the participating corporate leaders into two groups. Each group included a team of Smile Foundation kids who enjoyed assisting the participants and brought in added excitement to the competition. Each participant prepared a signature dish of his or her choice in the allotted time and the same was tasted and judged by Chef Vikas Khanna.
Cook for a Smile participants were:
Mr. Amit Modi, Director, ABA Corp. - Cleo County
Mr. Aseem Kapoor, Area Director – North West India - Hyatt Regency
Mr. Gulbahar Taurani, Director Marketing, Consumer Lifestyle - Philips India Limited
Mr. Hicham Lahkim Bennani, Director Commercial - Air France KLM
Mr. Rajat Jain, Managing Director - Xerox India Limited
Mr. Avinash Venkat, Director, Human Resources, South Asia & Sub Saharan Africa - Avery Dennison
Mr. Ashutosh Chadha, Director Corporate Affairs – South Asia – Intel
Mr. Tapan Ray, Managing Director and CEO - Nature Bio-Foods Limited
Dr. Shashi Kant Baliyan, Managing Director - ClearMedi Healthcare
Ms. Ratna Chadha, Chief Executive (TIRUN Travel Marketing India Representative) - Royal Caribbean Cruise
Mr. Sanjay Sethi, CEO & Co Founder - Shopclues.com
“We are proud to be associated with an initiative such as ‘Cook for a Smile’ which is a seamless extension of our own efforts at making a difference to the community. Our mission to provide authentic hospitality constantly inspires us to help deliver impactful change in society. Together with Smile Foundation and committed individuals such as Chef Vikas Khanna, we are proud to have been able to raise funds and awareness for 'Nutrition for Better Literacy'. While we focus towards nourishment with this initiative, our company-wide philanthropic and environmental platform – Hyatt Thrive –continues to undertake various fund-raising and volunteer activities through the year that emphasize our belief in Human Care and the Human Spirit,” said Yasmin D. Poonegar, Director of Corporate Communications, Hyatt Hotels & Resorts – Southwest Asia Ltd.
Knowing the children’s fondness for all things sweet, Chef Marin Leuthard, Executive Chef of Hyatt Regency Delhi, and his team, also set up a special pastry counter for the children of Smile Foundation at the event.
“One in every three malnourished children in the world is from India. The consequences are long-term and it prevents children’s overall growth, learning ability, going to school and a chance to come out of the vicious cycle of poverty for yet another generation. Thereby it also prevents the country’s growth. In order to bring some real and permanent changes in the lives of the most deserving children across India, we have brought together corporate leaders and trendsetters under our ‘Cook for a Smile’ initiative with celebrated Chef Vikas Khanna,” says Mr. Vikram Singh Verma, Chief Operating Officer, Smile Foundation.
About ‘Cook for a Smile’
‘Cook for a Smile’ is a charity cooking contest wherein corporate CEOs come together with Chef Vikas Khanna to cook, contest and raise support for Smile Foundation’s children. Smile Foundation believes in sensitizing the privileged section of the society so that they take active participation in the process of development.
To know more about the campaign, log onto - http://www.smilefoundationindia.org/cookforsmile/.