KHALIDA AND DAVID BROHI BARRON
The subject tonight is love - Hafiz
When David and I fell in love in 2014, we knew the universe had brought us together. At the same time, we could not fathom how we would ever make a union like ours possible. David belongs to an Italian-American family in Los Angeles and I am from a small village in the Balochistan region of Pakistan. We came from totally different worlds- each one rife with misunderstandings about the other which kept us apart.
In those days, sharing chai at meetings between our two families served as a creative and powerful way to generate space for dialogue and conversation. We came to realize that the process of reducing fear and bias often feels like an insurmountable challenge. For a long time, ingrained beliefs have spread in our societies which create judgment about each other long before we even get to know each other. Both David and my family had many assumptions which were hard to erase.
Those warm cups of chai paved the way for us to be with each together. If you would like to read more about this, you can read in detail about the events that took place in David's article for Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-barron/make-chai-not-war_b_12126600.html
With persistence and a little strategy we were engaged in Venice, Italy and later had a ten-day wedding in Karachi! We also had a second wedding celebration in Sedona, Arizona planned for David's family and friends. However, one month before heading to Arizona, we decided to use that money in a different way -to launch an initiative that helps us tackle global misunderstandings and fear in the most loving manner.
Within three months of that plan, The Chai Spot opened its doors! From that first day on, your love, support, and purchases have kept us successful and enabled us to launch our second location. This year, with the tremendous success of our model, we have brought that experience to Manhattan with another Spot on Mott Street! Check out our new location here: https://www.instagram.com/thechaispotnyc/
David Brohi Barron
David, 35, is an entrepreneur, artist, blogger and the president of the Verde Valley School Foundation board. Born in Los Angeles, David has spent several years in the deserts of Arizona as a student at Verde Valley School and adventuring in the mountains of Wyoming on horseback as a wrangler. He's been chastised by Noam Chomsky in Boston, spent summers on the shores of Lake Michigan, found technology solutions for environmental issues, and explored the work of his father with Academy Award-winning sound designers and composers. He constantly strives to discover the world and find ways to make it better, brighter and full of color!
Khalida Brohi (Barron)
Khalida, 29, is a social entrepreneur, public speaker and founder of The Sughar Foundation. Sughar is a non -profit organization focused on providing socio-economic empowerment opportunities to rural and tribal women in Pakistan. Belonging to the Balochistan province of Pakistan, Khalida has lived her life surrounded by beautiful traditions and rich cultures. However, amidst this beauty, she has witnessed the harshness of cultural restrictions on women which deprive them of decision-making powers and can lead to domestic violence. Since she was sixteen, Khalida has continually been fighting to end such restrictive customs. Currently, she aims to support one million women in ten years through her initiatives at Sughar and The Chai Spots!