We had the good fortune of connecting with Fareida Rajkumar and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Fareida, is there a quote or affirmation that’s meaningful to you?
“Be the change you wish to see” Mahatma Ghandhi (shortened) I believe that we all have the potential to influence and create that which is missing in the world. Once I realized my untapped potential, it opened up a door for me to help others do the same. My organization was created to bring together individuals with skills and resources that can be pooled and utilized to uplift our community and grow each other along the way. Instead of complaining or expecting someone else to do it, we can effect change in our individual capacities and inspire others to do the same. When I saw what was lacking in my community, it motivated me to act, to utilized the strengths and resources of others to bring it to life.
What should our readers know about your business?
NetHP ( Networking for Hindu Professionals) is a member based charitable business organization that was created to bring together students, professionals, business owners and community leaders from the Hindu community. We host monthly networking socials at local businesses each month and provide a platform for these members to network, build relationships, give referrals and utilize each other’s services. What makes us different from other networking orgs is our focus on our local community and the charitable work we do within it. When someone becomes an annual member, a large part of their membership dues are allocated towards our monthly donations. Each member brings a suggested charity/cause to add to a portfolio from which we select each month to support. These charities generally serves or supports the needs of our community ranging from senior services, women’s needs, cancer research, etc. We invite a representative from the selected charity to speak to our members and inform them of the work we are supporting. In addition to giving a monthly donation together as a group, we also volunteer together at events and we donate our business services to those in need. We have become a resource for our community, encouraging them to utilize the services of our members and as a result, growing ourselves as a contributing part of the greater community. I am most excited about seeing the younger college students interact with others who serve as mentors, provide internships, workshops, jobs and more. We have created a system of continuity, as these students then become tomorrow’s professionals, business owners and leaders. We are where we are today because of a idealized vision. I’ve lived in the South Florida Hindu community for over twenty-five years and have served it in many capacities. I have, however, always felt that we were separated by counties of origin and cultural nuances. We socialized in small fragmented groups and didn’t seem to identify as a whole. I personally longed for a greater, deeper connection. And so, NetHP was born. It was created out of the desire to bring us all together under the united banner of being Hindus and having the intrinsic value to serve others. It was not easy, as many thought it was wishful thinking and too good to be true. But once we dispelled those notions and doubts, we began to flourish and grow quickly. We garnered the respect and approval of temples, reputable orgs, community leaders and the community at large. South Florida is home to thousands of successful Hindus from all corners of the world and our membership reflects this. Once established as a premier source of services and support, we gained notoriety. We overcame challenges in earning the trust of the community by actively engaging with them, supporting their needs, fundraising and giving our time. Once the community approved of us, the rest fell into place. I’m continually learning from my peers and role models, they have created a foundation for us and it is up to us to take up the torch and light the path for others. I would like to inspire others by my actions, and be remembered for being an visionary advocate for my community. Our motto is “Gather, Give and Grow,” and I live by it.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
This is a great question because I am constantly entertaining guests or getting calls about where to go, where to eat, etc. My background is in the hospitality industry and since I’m a Sommelier and Restaurant Consultant, everyone assumes that I know the best places in town. No pressure. So my last guest was was from cold Canada, so it’ was a no brainer. First and foremost, I pride myself on putting together a welcome basket that includes all the Florida essentials like sunblock, flip flops,a water bottle etc. and making him/her feel at home. We would spend the mornings doing yoga on beach, going for morning walks in one of the many beautiful parks, having meals at the most diverse eateries on las olas, sunny isle, coral gables and midtown Miami. After noon activities would be tennis, canoeing/ kayaking the splendid waterways, taking the water taxi for a relaxing intracoastal views and do some people watching at the local hotspots like Yolo & Salt. The west coast is just a little easy drive and worth doing to experience the white sand beaches of Sarasota, Sanibel and Captiva, my favorite gems. What I would enjoy sharing most would be the glorious sunrises and sunsets, the warm temps, the soothing breezes along with the company of my close friends and family in this slower paced way of life we are afforded just for being a Floridian. And yes, I would be able to select the best wines from any list to go along with the freshest seafood from The Keys and beyond!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would like to dedicate this to the motivated members of our organization (NetHP). I had a vision, but they have been instrumental in utilizing this platform to help our community with their services, mentoring, volunteering and donations. Especially during the pandemic, our members were at the forefront helping and encouraging others. I believed in our ability to rally together as a united, inclusive, vibrant, active group of professionals, I have since seen that become a reality. Today, we are a diverse group of students, aspiring professionals, business owners and community leaders, who are making an impact on our community through service. I would be remiss, however, if I did not acknowledge that I’m eternally grateful to have been raised as a Hindu with the intrinsic value of “service to all,”the guiding principle of my life.
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