Juhi Chawla star attraction at SKN Hope Gala in New Jersey

More than 500 supporters in the fields of business, arts, philanthropy and medicine attended the annual SKN Hope Gala on Friday, at the Marigold Hotel in Somerset, New Jersey, which focused its efforts to raise funds for South Asian children with special needs this year.

“We could not be more humbled by the love and generosity of the community,” said founder Dr. Naveen Mehrotra. “SKN’s goal is to educate the South Asian community about the various diseases that plague our loved ones, and this year, we wanted to shed light on how parents cope with their children with special needs.”

The major beneficiary of this year’s fundraiser will be the Special Needs Community Outreach Program for Empowerment (SCOPE).

Guest of Honor Juhi Chawla, a renowned Indian actress, humanitarian and former Miss India, spoke at the event and served as the show stopper for international fashion designer to the stars, Joy Mitra, who debuted a special collection he created just for the cause.

The fashion show spotlighted special needs children, who walked the ramp with their mothers, followed by an intimate Q&A between host Mini Mathur and the fathers.

“What an amazing opportunity for my son! I am so proud of him every day, and walking the ramp, dressed up so fabulously, allowed him to know that we love him just as he is,” said Radha Lath, mother of Aditya Lath, a child with special needs.

“Parents of special needs children have an unbelievable level of grit and determination, as they face daily life issues, and we are honored to be shedding light on some of their challenges at the SKN Foundation Gala,” said Sonalika Ahuja of Beyond Media, the woman who executed the event for the second year in a row.

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