INTERVIEW WITH FOUNDER
Why Grace in Action?
Grace in Action is driven by the belief that when an idea emerges to positively transform lives, it becomes essential to pursue it tirelessly. This is why we exist.
How did GIA come to be?
The journey of Grace in Action began in 2016 when I transitioned from social work to technical recruiting. Families I had previously helped reached out to me for ongoing support after they no longer qualified for the program I worked for. I knew their situation well, I knew they needed help. So I started gathering basic necessities from my pantry, clothes from my wardrobe, and even furniture from my living room. My daughter and I would personally deliver these essentials to the families in need. As they need for support increased I began to sought support from my personal network and collaborated with other nonprofit organizations. Sridhar Oruganti, a dedicated advocate and my client and manager at Amazon, was one of our first supporters, generously contributing his resources for summer trips and Christmas gifts for the children.
Over time, this community initiative evolved into the establishment of Grace in Action, a nonprofit organization.
Our Work and Vision
While providing essential support for basic needs remains important, we also focus on fostering high-value skills like cybersecurity. By empowering individuals in impoverished communities with these skills, we enable economic, psychological, and emotional progress. Imagine the impact when a young adult secures a well-paying job, earning over $80,000 annually, lifting their family out of poverty and opening up new possibilities.
The technology industry, particularly cybersecurity, requires talented individuals. GIA aims to not only supply talent but also deliver well skilled individuals who can make a company proud to have them as junior members.
Mindfulness in Our Technology Program
Integrating mindfulness into our technology program is crucial to address the psychological challenges faced by individuals living in poverty. These individuals often struggle with anxieties, PTSD, and feelings of inferiority. Their experiences of constant struggle and oppression make it difficult for them to envision a better future. We understand that these challenges can make it harder for them to navigate demanding training programs. Therefore, our training includes mindfulness practices to support students throughout their journey.
We take this aspect seriously and have assembled a board of advisors, including a Curriculum Development Advisor and professional psychologists and therapists, to ensure expertise and care.
Why the Name Grace in Action?
The name "Grace in Action" was chosen because the word "grace" represents honor and unmerited help. The concept of "unmerited help" embodies our mission. Our motto, "If we can, we should!" reminds us that it is our responsibility to assist others when we have the ability to do so. By embodying grace in action, we strive to make a tangible difference in the lives of those we serve, empowering them with tools and support for a brighter future.