Supporter Spotlight – Sonia Rai and Veer Dave

Two Long-Time Friends Who Aspire to Make the World a Better Place Begin with TASK

LONG-TIME FRIENDS: Veer Dave and Sonia Rai stand with canned goods purchased with funds collected through their hugely successful crowdfunding campaign. The items are just some they donated to TASK recently.

Friendships can certainly enrich our lives, but we don’t often think about how our friendships enrich the lives of others.

Sonia Rai and Veer Dave have been close family friends forever. A junior and sophomore, respectively, at Spotswood High School, they have many things in common and both are driven by their commitment to making the world a better place.

Both the Rai and Dave families have made it a priority to serve their community and support nonprofit organizations both at home and abroad. As the pandemic progressed, Sonia and Veer often discussed its impact in the community and felt an increasing sense of urgency to try to help others.

Their research led them to TASK. “We chose TASK because of our connection to its mission, their selfless volunteers and its close proximity,” said Sonia. In addition to TASK’s meal service, Veer said, “We were shocked to learn that as many as 400 patrons visited in a day for basic fundamentals.”

With the help of their parents, they reached out to TASK to find out what items were needed most. After determining three basic categories of need (food, hygiene and safety), Sonia and Veer established a crowdfunding campaign to raise money to purchase items for TASK. The friends spread the word through social media and the families joined together to incentivize participation by establishing their own match up to $5,000. By regularly and cleverly sharing their progress as their campaign gained momentum, Sonia and Veer saw their donations grow and even inspired their siblings, Nikhail and Rithik, to join their shopping trips and – literally – help carry the load.

When it was over, Sonia and Veer raised a total of $12,500, which they donated, in part, to TASK and used to purchase shelf-stable foods and hygiene essentials. In addition, after learning that many TASK patrons struggle to keep items like their identification cards safe, Sonia and Veer also provided dozens of wallets and fanny packs.

“While we feel great about what we did, we also realize it’s far from over. This rewarding life-changing experience has taught us that a small effort by lots of generous people can have a significant impact on our communities,” says Sonia. Veer adds, “It has inspired us to take part in serving communities even more in the future and be part of the change we wish to see.”

TASK is grateful to Sonia, Veer and their families for their thoughtful and generous donation. If you would like to donate to TASK or start your own fundraiser, please call (609) 695-5456 x117 to learn more.

GROUP PICTURE (left to right): The Dave Family (Umangi, Kuldip, Rithik, Veer), The Rai Family (Sonia, Vinod, Sangeetha, Nikhail)