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Helping Children to “Give Dreams Flight”

18 June 2012

Witnessing the impact of poverty on the children of Bihar, India so deeply impacted Tarik Kadri (MSW 2012 Factor-Inwentash), that he founded Paper Kite Children’s Foundation to improve the living conditions and futures of the children most at risk, orphans and especially orphaned girls.

“It is possible to run a charity with low operation costs – you just have to work at it – to be transparent and accountable.”

- Tarik Kadri

About Paper Kite Children’s Foundation

Paper Kite is a volunteer-run, non-profit children’s charity which provides basic necessities to children living in orphanages in the state of Bihar, India. These basic necessities cover four major categories based on the UN Future Fit for Children (Millennium Development Goals): proper nutrition, clean water, education, and health and welfare.

A unique feature of the Foundation is that no money is given to the orphanages directly; instead, supplies are purchased by Paper Kite through local merchants and then delivered to the orphanages. This ensures that donors know exactly where there money is going, it helps support the local economy and ensures that supplies are culturally relevant.

Paper Kite was started in Vancouver, BC, in 2009 and has since expanded to Toronto and Ottawa.

Alumni bio

Tarik Kadri (MSW 2012 Factor-Inwentash) is President and Founder of Paper Kite Children’s Foundation. He is a military social worker, and has been with the military since 1997 when he started as a part-time Reservist.

In 2008, Tarik travelled to India for the first time with his Yoga group. He wanted to become a Yogi and volunteer in an Ashram. He travelled to Bihar to the spot where Buddha is said to have achieved enlightenment (Bodhgaya). While there, he walked into an orphanage unexpectedly, and what he saw there changed his life forever:

“I couldn’t believe that, in a world of abundance, these children are shivering in a corner, haven’t had fruit for a month, and are living without basic necessities.”

Once back in Canada, Tarik searched for charities helping Bihar, bud he couldn’t find any. Following the suggestion of a friend, and after several months of consideration, he decided to look into starting his own charity, as he couldn’t get the imprinted image of the children of Bihar out of his mind. Paper Kite Children’s Foundation was finally incorporated in June, 2009, and charitable registration was received in July, 2009.

Tarik says that U of T has been a wonderful networking community, and has helped with the expansion of Paper Kite from Vancouver to Toronto. He says, “for those of us fortunate enough to attend U of T, we’ve been given an opportunity to make a difference in this world. It’s important that we give back by utilizing what we’ve learned in a meaningful way – not just by donating money but by volunteering time and skills.”


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