Connecting NGO Team


Arnavaz Damania (Founding Trustee)

Mrs. Arnavaz Damania is the founding trustee of Connecting NGO. With a vision far ahead of her time, she set up Connecting with the aim of creating an emotionally supportive and compassionate world thereby preventing suicide. Apart from this, she is on the board of advisors, board of directors and trustee of many organisations such as Dnyanadevi and Symbiosis Spa Center. She has received the “Shiv Chhatrapati” Award for recognition as a front-runner in Organising and Promoting Women’s Hockey in Maharashtra. She was also awarded the NGO Leadership Award in 2016 by the Indira Group of Institutions for creating a huge impact in the society using a MAD (Making a Difference) approach. She is also the owner of the Gazelle Health Spas, Beauty Parlours and Academy, Pune. Arnavaz continues to be the biggest crusader of this movement she began almost single-handedly and is an enthusiastic participant in all activities at Connecting.

Trupti Poduval (CEO)

Trupti has completed her Masters in Counseling Psychology from Christ University, Bangalore and has volunteered and worked in various mental health institutions prior to joining Connecting as staff. She is passionate about Psychology and mental health and wants to establish a career in the development sector in India. She believes that training and capacity building are the need of the hour in order to reach out to the masses and to ensure that every individual gets access to the right information and the required help at the right time. Her dream for Connecting is to align its working with the Sustainable Development Goals given by the United Nations and have a nation-wide reach through collaborations and exchanges. Apart from overlooking all the programmatic and administrative activities of the NGO, she coordinates the entire working of the Peer Educators Program and represents Connecting NGO at BNI Chapter Dynamic, Pune East Region. She also steers the awareness and fundraising initiatives of the NGO. For Trupti, volunteer engagement and retention is one of the most challenging yet most satisfying aspects of her role at Connecting.



Vikramsinh Pawar (Senior Program Coordinator)

Vikram comes from a Social Work background and is a passionate activist for the LGBTQ community. He has a background in Sociology and has also worked in the Hospitality sector before moving to the development sector. He is a trained Cabin Crew. His passion always lay in social work. He has previously worked for Sampathik Trust– a Pune based NGO that works for advocacy and health of LGBTHI communities. Vikram works in the capacity of Coordinator for the Helpline program and Survivor Support Program. Vikram handles the awareness initiatives in the communities and public places along with press and media interactions. He also looks after volunteer induction and retention.

Kiran Khanna (Administration In-charge)

Kiran started her career with Grant Advertising in Bombay where she spent 12 years working initially in the Media Department and later handling the firm’s clients as an Account Executive. Then she worked for 6 years as Executive Secretary to the General Manager at a British multinational - Whatman Paper Ltd. in Bombay. Following this, she moved to a Swedish multinational- Hoganas India Ltd. in Pune for almost 19 years where her roles spanned across Marketing and Sales and Import and Export departments. She retired from Hoganas in 2006. She is currently responsible for looking after the administration and accounts working at Connecting.

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