Started in January of 2014, co-founders Amman Seehra, Fizza Seehra, Kiran Gill, and Dan Greco came together to create the ONE Project in a very organic way.
It started two years ago through conversations between Amman Seehra, a lawyer born and raised in Hamilton, who has done a lot of public interest work in Trenton and Mercer County, and his wife Fizza Seehra, Director of Strategic Analytics & Customer Management with Johnson & Johnson.
They kicked around the idea of creating a service-based non-profit where Sikh youths would collaborate with other religious youth groups. But, with a vision of religious groups convening for social change, they realized that perhaps limiting the youth to the Sikh faith was too narrow of a focus. Kiran Gill, a childhood friend of Amman and Fizza, mentioned to them that she had been to an interfaith service in Delaware that moved her because it really brought the whole community together. Gill became one of the integral co-founders to create this organization.
Seehra shared his ideas with Dan Greco, Pastor of Lifetree Community Church, while playing basketball just as they have together twice a week for the past 3 years. He asked Greco for his thoughts about incorporating a partnership of community service with religious groups. From that conversation, grew an ongoing brainstorming of ideas and, eventually timelines. In January of 2014, the non-profit began planning its first events and initiatives and coordinating the youth-volunteers.
Working with high school students there were 3 initial “Youth Coordinators” from Lawrence and West Windsor-Plainsboro South. The ONE Project then recruited 15 school liaisons from different high schools including Lawrence, Steinart, West Windsor Plainsboro South, West Windsor Plainsboro North, Princeton, Middlesex Academy, Montgomery, and Robbinsvillle.
In addition, they planned for their inaugural event called The Hunger Project. The goal was to bring people together from across the community, of all different backgrounds, together to package meals for the local food bank. They partnered with Feeding Children Everywhere and donated the meals to Mercer Street Friends. It was a fun day for the hundreds of community members who attended, and a great foundation for the annual Hunger Project events.