The second phase of the Jiyo Parsi campaign was launched on 29th July, 2017, at KR Cama Oriental Institute, by the PARZOR Foundation along with Madison World, the Bombay Parsi Punchayet, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai and the Federation of Zoroastrian Anjumans of India.
Compered by Jiyo Parsi’s counsellor Pearl Mistry, the evening was chaired by Chief Guest, Minister of State for Minority Affairs – Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi; with Guest of Honour and Consul General of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Mumbai – Masood E. Khaleghi; Parsi Member of National Commission for Minorities – Vada Dasturji Khurshed Dastoor; Program Coordinator, Jiyo Parsi Program – Dr. Katy Gandevia; PARZOR Foundation’s Dr. Niloufer Shroff; Jt. Sec. Ministry of Minority Affairs – Meena Singh; Founder and Chairman of Madison World – Sam Balsara; BPP Chairman – Yazdi Desai; BPP Trustee – Armaity Tirandaz and TV celebrity, Parizad Kolah Marshall.
Vada Dasturji Khurshed led the Humbandagi, followed by Pearl Mistry applauding Director of the UNESCO PARZOR project, Dr. Shernaz Cama for her enthusiasm for Jiyo Parsi. Dr. Katy Gandevia read out Dr. Cama’s message which mentioned that the Ministry of Minority Affairs stands by the Parsi community. Appreciating Mr. Sam Balsara’s willingness to help spread the message of Jiyo Parsi at no cost, Dr. Cama affirmed, “Madison World breathed life into the entire Jiyo Parsi project. The second Phase aims to show the community how to choose a holistic life. The Zoroastrian philosophy is one of choice and it is this choice which Jiyo Parsi showcases in the second publicity phase. The new Ad-campaign shows how to balance our professional and family lives.”
Parizad narrated her experience about how she was professionally signed on for the Great Indian Laughter Challenge when she was pregnant with her first child, how she worked far into her pregnancy before her daughter was born and resumed her work six months later. Later she had a son. Parizad said, “The joy it gives me to come home to my husband and children is priceless. Their support means the world to me.”
Speaking about the success of Jiyo Parsi’s first phase, Dr. Shernaz said, “104 children in 3 years may not sound like a huge number but it is an 18% rise in the birth rate of Parsis!”
Sam Balsara said, “Three years ago, for the first time I believed in an Ad-campaign to protect a community, and today we meet again to release its second phase. The object of our first campaign was to introduce and create awareness about the concept of Jiyo Parsi programme and address challenges. The campaign drew much attention and was widely discussed in not just our community, but in other communities too! In the second phase, we want to specifically highlight the advantage of getting married early and starting a family from an individual’s perspective, not from the community’s perspective. We want this phase to be action oriented.”
Pearl Mistry introduced Masood Khaleghi as a friend of the Parsis who has provided valuable advice on protecting our heritage. Khaleghi praised Jiyo Parsi and emphasized on the importance of the quantitative and qualitative growth of the community. Armaity Tirandaz introduced Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi as an empathetic and sensitive leader, who always gives time to listen to the community’s issues and provides us with the best guidance. Addressing the audience, Mr. Naqvi said, “I salute Jiyo Parsi’s excellent work and their determined efforts to increase awareness and numbers of the community. I assure Jiyo Parsi and the community of all help and cooperation from the Ministry of Minority Affairs.”
Sam Balsara and Mr. Naqvi unveiled the Ad campaign, commencing with a short film conveying how bleak old age is for singles as compared to having a wonderful family life. A question and answer session ensued with Dr. Katy Gandevia and Balsara providing answers to the audience, sharing how the Government has subsidised IVF treatment for Parsis; how the new Jiyo Parsi phase plans on providing a crèche for children of working parents; how couples are counselled about the IVF treatment, etc. This drew widespread media coverage and concluded with refreshments.
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