March 18, 2020
We Karachiites are foodies! So, when we received a circular for a Bohri food night, we jumped at it, on the roof of TDF “Ghar” (“house” in Urdu)- super dinner, pleasant weather, outstanding view of Quaid-e-Azam’s Mausoleum, typical Parsi loudness and laughter, great service by our Bohri hosts & excellent value for money!
However, what was just as interesting was TDF Ghar- one of the old, pre-partition houses in the old city of Karachi, wonderfully restored by TDF. Quoting from TDF’s history –
“TDF Ghar was built in 1920-30’s. This house was initially owned by a Hindu woman, Haribai Motiram, which she sold in April 1948 to Hajiani Hanifabai for her daughter Aisha Bai Dawood in June 1948 as a residence.
In April 1961 the House was donated to The Dawood Foundation. In 1965, Ahmed Dawood established Hanifa Hajiani Haji Gani Vocational Training Center for Women. The training center used to enroll over 150 students per batch and train them in typing, cooking, sewing, painting, hand & machinery embroidery and English language.
TDF Ghar is open to all to promote informal learning spaces in Karachi. TDF Ghar is based on a self-sustainability business model- revenues generated from rentals and tickets is re-invested in the upkeep and development of the Ghar.”
With a small café on premises, we experienced families, youngsters & groups socially interacting with each other; playing board games; reading; using the library. It was an amazing experience. It was surreal finding such an oasis in bustling Karachi!
Kudos to The Dawood Foundation for yet another public service to the citizens of Karachi … and Pakistan!