HOUSTON (Nov. 22, 2016) – –  Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston’s (IM) 2016 “For All Humanity Luncheon” raised a record amount for IM’s valuable programming, including  refugee resettlement.

Close to 400 guests attended the Nov. 17 luncheon, which raised more than $220,000, nearly a 70 percent increase from last year’s luncheon.

“It is gratifying to see so much support from the community,” said Martin B. Cominsky, IM’s President and CEO. “Not only did we see more people attend the event than ever before, we saw them donating to our work at an unprecedented level of generosity.”

For this year’s luncheon, IM honored community leaders Farid and Asha Virani.  Farid Virani is the founder and CEO of Prime Communications, the largest privately held AT&T Authorized Retail Chain in the United States. Asha Virani is an internal medicine physician who is active in a number of causes dedicated to improving children’s health and education. Together, they both actively give back to the community.

“The community coming together in support of the work of IM by being united in service, open heartedness, and generosity is a testimony and reaffirmation of the goodness and compassion that is at the heart and ethos of our city,” said Asha Virani. “May we continue to lead by example by sharing our light with others.”

Event chairs were: Mr. and Mrs. Nick Kermally; Mr. and Mrs. Richard Vaughan; Mr. and Mrs. Akbar Mohamed; Mr. and Mrs. Beau Pollock; and Mr. and Mrs. Manolo Sanchez. Harris County Judge Ed Emmett provided the keynote address and Channel 13’s Miya Shay

served as emcee.

This year, IM introduced a marketplace of beautiful gifts for purchase, with fabulous finds from Ten Thousand Villages, Community Cloth, Elaine Turner, Kendra Scott and Popinjay.

Proceeds from the luncheon help IM serve more than 2,500 refugees each year fleeing persecution and violence in their homelands. More than 90 percent of these refugees are self-sufficient members of the Houston community within six months of arrival.

“In these times of uncertainty, it’s heartening to know that the community has citizens like the Viranis, and others, who believe in the importance of welcoming new Americans in such a warm and giving way,” Cominsky said. “It says much about the welcoming spirit that makes Houston an example for other cities to aspire.”



A United Way agency, Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston (IM) brings people of diverse faith traditions together for dialogue, collaboration and service, as a demonstration of our shared beliefs. IM provides three main services: Meals on Wheels for Greater Houston which delivers more than 1.5 million meals each year to seniors in Harris and Galveston Counties; Refugee Services which, in conjunction with the U.S. State Department, resettles thousands of refugees in Houston; and, Interfaith Relations, which provides community services fostering understanding, respect and engagement among Houstonians of all faiths.