Mumbai: The Diamond Empowerment Fund (DEF) announced two new grants totaling $130,000 to educational institutions in India and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
The DEF and its board approved a $100,000 award to Veerayatan, marking the second consecutive year that the fund has given financial backing to the organization. Veerayatan was the first educational institution in India to receive funding from the DEF.
The DEF also sanctioned a $30,000 grant to the Diamond Development Initiative (DDI) to fund the DEF Mobile School for students in the DRC.
“These institutions are making a positive transformative difference in India and in Africa,” said Benjamin Chavis, the DEF’s senior strategic advisor and co-founder.
“Our main objective is to transform the artisanal mining sector into a viable economic activity and to upgrade the way artisanal miners mine,” said Dorothée Gizenga, executive director and co-founder of the DDI, commenting on the mobile school of traveling teachers and portable materials. “It’s important to tell the story of how diamonds can be an agent for development.”