We are India’s only non-profit that helps children fight cancer with holistic nutrition.

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Data feeds our fight.

We track our patients’ progress through our FoodHeals™ App making sure children are completing treatment and improving their nutritional status. The App was designed to aid our nutritionists in their work, while simultaneously increasing overall accuracy, consistency and efficiency of our program.

Total Transparency.

What you see is what you get. We’ve consistently strived to meet the highest benchmarks in accountability and transparency. We understand that this is your hard-earned money and we always use it responsibly.

Meet our family.

From our founder, trustees and advisory board to our on-ground team, everyone has a story that led them to Cuddles Foundation.

Purnota Dutta Bahl

Trustee, Founder & CEO

The soul of Cuddles Foundation, when Purnota saw the impact of the lack of nutrition on kids with cancer firsthand during a visit to Tata Memorial Hospital, she knew she had to do something about it. She left her decade long career in corporate India to fight childhood cancer, and Cuddles Foundation was born.

Before Cuddles, Purnota worked as a marketing professional for 11 years, managing brands for Shaadi.com and Hindustan Times. She’s an alum of Sydenham College, Mumbai and has an MBA from the Indian School of Business, Hyderabad.

Trustees & Advisory Board

We’re lucky to count on familiar faces to champion our cause.

When you change a child’s future, you change yours as well.

Join our team today and you’ll see for yourself.

Building the frontline.

Are you a healthcare professional or student looking to learn more about paediatric care and nutrition? You can attend some of our expert courses on Paediatric Nutrition.

Give a little.

Fighting cancer needs all the help it can get.

Varsha Ojha

From creating timeless brand stories to strengthening consumer engagement through deep data analytics, Varsha has two decades of experience across leading media houses such as Group M, Walt Disney Television, Sony TV, Zoom TV, Jagran Group (Radio City & Mid-day), and Shemaroo Entertainment.

At Cuddles Foundation, she leads the overall marketing strategy and channels her extensive marketing expertise and passion into increasing awareness, enhancing outreach, and deepening consumer engagement.

She holds a Bachelor’s degree in English Literature from Delhi University and completed her PGDBA from Mumbai University. In her personal time, she likes to travel, play tennis and table-tennis, practice yoga, and sing with her 9-year-old.

Saifuddin Savliwala

Saifuddin, certified PMP® and AWS Cloud, boasts a distinguished career spanning over two decades in web technologies, digital marketing, and application development. His expertise includes leading-edge tech and digital transformations, with a robust blend of technical and functional acumen. Known for adeptness in business process re-engineering and workflow automation, he consistently drives operational efficiency through meticulous optimisation.

With credentials from CDAC and a Master’s from JBIMS, Saifuddin brings a wealth of expertise to the table. Previously, he served as a Senior Project Manager in Singapore for a prominent digital marketing agency, spearheading projects with global clientele and catalysing Digital Transformations.

Outside of work, Saifuddin indulges in his passion for cars and satisfies his wanderlust as an avid traveller, often engaging in various sporting activities too.

Dr. Archana Sangekar

Dr. Archana Sangekar brings with her over 25 years of experience as one of the most respected paediatricians in Mumbai. She is known for her love, compassion and empathy towards her young patients.

Archana begins her day with yoga and exercise, maintains a healthy lifestyle and firmly believes in the power of “FoodHeals.”

We rely on her keen eye and vast knowledge to provide us with the right perspectives and insights for our program.

Amruta Ghanekar

Amruta oversees all program activities to ensure that program objectives are met and aligned with the organisation’s mission while delivering maximum care to the beneficiaries. A Chartered Accountant by training, she has always been passionate about using her skills to make a positive impact on society.

After several years of working as a tax consultant with Ernst & Young, she decided to pursue her passion for the non-profit sector and obtained a Master’s in Non-profit Leadership from the School of Policy and Practice at the University of Pennsylvania. For the past 12 years, she has been working in various areas of the social sector in India, like education, gender equality and healthcare. Amruta loves to read outside of work and enjoys getting lost in a good book. She also loves listening to music of a wide variety of genres.

Dr. Sripriya Venkiteswaran

Sripriya heads content at Cuddles Institute of Clinical Nutrition, the knowledge and training arm of Cuddles Foundation. She is responsible for creating content that is relevant, accurate and actionable. She is also involved in various research initiatives at Cuddles Foundation.

Over the past 15+ years,, Sripriya has worked in diverse backgrounds of cancer research, molecular biology, drug discovery, clinical dietetics, nutrition counselling, education and nutritional marketing. Sripriya holds a Doctorate in Nutritional Sciences from Rutgers University, USA. Her core strength is her in-depth knowledge of nutrition at the physiological, molecular and genome levels.

Sripriya has presented at scientific conferences and has publications in peer-reviewed journals. The kitchen is her refuge, and she swears that baking is therapy.

Nidhi Ramachandran

As the People Ops Lead at Cuddles, Nidhi steers team engagement, productivity and culture. Before Cuddles, she was the Co-Founder at Peel-Works Pvt Ltd – India’s leading B2B grocer-focussed e-commerce company – for a decade. She brings almost two decades of experience in managing people and businesses.

Nidhi graduated with honours in Economics from SRCC and has an MBA from the Indian School of Business. Born and raised in Delhi, she has called Mumbai her home for the last 15 years and her pet peeve is being asked which city she likes more! She loves Crossfit and likes starting her day early to get in a WOD (Workout of the Day) before anything else.

Neerja Birla

Neerja is the Chairperson of one of the most high-ranking Indian schools, The Aditya Birla World Academy and The Aditya Birla Integrated School. She is also the Founder and Chairperson of Mpower, a movement that aims to positively change attitudes towards mental health. Neerja has also been honoured with the Icon of Excellence Award by FICCI-FLO – Sambhavaa and the Woman of Excellence Award by FICCI’s Ladies Wing.

Viji Venkatesh

Viji brings 28 years of professional experience in cancer patient care and support as Country Head India at The Max Foundation. Through the years, Viji has served many community leadership roles in the cancer care arena, including her time as the Asia Coordinator for the International Union against Cancer (UICC), where she developed and led symposiums, workshops and learning programs. She was also instrumental in setting up the Preventive Oncology Department at Tata Memorial Hospital in 1991, where she has contributed to the renowned institute as an active member of its Ethics Committee. In 2009, Viji was awarded the Scroll of Honour for her outstanding contribution in Social Service from the Health Minister of Bihar at the World Cancer Day Celebration in Patna, India.

Indu Rao

Indu is a coach, caregiver, counsellor and chef, all rolled into one, and our rockstar Head of Organisational Development. In her 40 years of experience, she has used simple strategies to steer many organisations and individuals towards goal assessment, actualisation and growth. A fellow of Board Source Washington DC, a member of the leadership team of Habitat for Humanity Asia Pacific, and a principal consultant for The International Union against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease based in Paris, Indu is an all-rounder!

Vandana Pai

Vandana has over 14 years of legal experience. She did her Bachelor in Law from National Law School, Bangalore and her Masters at Columbia Law School, New York. She is a partner at Bharucha & Partners, and her practice areas include Private Equity, Mergers & Acquisitions, General Corporate and Employment Law. She has been recognised as a leading lawyer for Private Equity in India.

Ajay Poddar

Ajay is Chief Technology Officer for Retirement Tech at HDFC Life Insurance. Prior to this, he was Senior Vice President of Engineering at Shaadi.com. He is an avid traveller and an Internet evangelist in open-source technologies. He has been unleashing the power of the web over the last 23 years. When not submerged in the world of tech and codes, Ajay is our de-facto Chief Tech Officer devoting his time and knowledge to make us more tech efficient. He has played a massive role in building our FoodHeals App.

Shalini Jatia

Shalini is an early believer, torchbearer, mentor and guide who has steered Cuddles to where it is today. She is the Secretary of ImPaCCT Foundation, the Pediatric Foundation of Tata Memorial Hospital. As Secretary, she uses her network and social skills to reach out to the well-off and business community to make charitable donations towards paediatric care. 

Shalini was awarded the prestigious Contributions to Society award by the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi’s political organisation, Friends of NaMo, for her unwavering commitment to society. She is also an active member of the Abandonment Working Group in the Paediatric Oncology Group of Developing Countries. She is involved in developing software that helps keep track of patients. Additionally, she has contributed richly as a Member of the Ethics Review Board for clinical trials.

Abhishek Goel

After a chance encounter with a Japanese professor who needed support in editing his research paper, Abhishek co-founded Cactus Communications in 2002, focusing on providing English editing services (though the service brand Editage) for researchers in Japan. Today CACTUS is a pioneering global scientific communications company with offices in Mumbai, Tokyo, Seoul, Shanghai, Beijing, London and Philadelphia. Cactus was ranked first as India’s Great Mid-Size Workplaces, 2017 by the Great Places to Work Institute.

Dr. Brijesh Arora

Dr Brijesh Arora is a Professor in Pediatric Oncology and an immediate past convener of the Paediatric Hemato-Lymphoid disease management group at Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, India. Dr Arora has done his post-graduation in Pediatrics from Delhi University and his DM (fellowship) in Medical & Pediatric Oncology from AIIMS, New Delhi. He has done his training in Paediatric Haematology Oncology and BMT from Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada. He has been actively involved in pediatric oncology clinical research and has done his formal postgraduate training in clinical research at Bombay College of Pharmacy. He is also the national managing committee member of the Indian Cancer Society, Medical Advisor to Cuddles Foundation and treasurer of the Mumbai Hematology group. He is an Honorary Trustee of the Indian Cooperative Oncology Network (ICON) & Chair of the ICON Paediatric Sub-Committee.

VT Bharadwaj

​​VT Bharadwaj is a General Partner at A91 Partners, an Indian private investment firm that seeks to partner with founders to build enduring businesses for tomorrow’s India. 

Before co-founding A91 Partners,  VT was a Managing Director at Sequoia Capital, a global venture capital firm in India, where he led investments in consumer, pharmaceutical and healthcare sectors. Before that, he worked at McKinsey & Co.

VT has an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad and a BE (Hons) in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from BITS Pilani.

 VT is a trustee at Ashoka University, a board member of IIM Ahmedabad Endowment Management Company, a Founding Circle member of Museum of Art & Photography and involved with Cuddles Foundation and Swasth Foundation.

Gunjan Bahl

Gunjan Bahl is Managing Director at Bain Capital, where he is focused on the real estate vertical in India. Prior to joining Bain Capital, Mr. Bahl has worked with LOGOS (logistics specialist), Govt. of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC) and J.P.Morgan Asset Management, where he has invested significant funds in Indian real estate across commercial, residential, hotel and logistics assets. He also holds an MBA with a specialisation in Finance and Marketing from the Indian School of Business, Hyderabad.

Neeraj Agarwala

Neeraj is a qualified Chartered Accountant with over 17 years of experience. He started his career with erstwhile Arthur Andersen and Ernst & Young before charting his practice. His domains range from auditing, income tax, service tax, FEMA, international tax and transfer pricing. Neeraj is a partner at Nangia & Co LLP.

Anisha Guptan

Anisha is our strategy lead, making sure every team is on the same wavelength and driving forward. With 20 years under her belt in film, advertising, PR, and radio, she has been steering communications for both nonprofits and for-profits. This is Anisha’s second stint with us, after leading our marketing and communication team for six years. She holds a BA (Hons.) in Economics from St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai, and a PGD in Mass Communication (Film & TV) from Symbiosis Institute of Mass Communication, Pune. Outside of work, she’s happiest on a mountain top or backpacking through jungle trails.

Jasmita Kar

At Cuddles, Jasmita manages all critical fundraising and training-related events. She is also the link between the doctors at our partner hospitals and the organisation.

Before joining Cuddles, Jasmita worked as a designer in the apparel industry in India and Singapore, where she presented the work of the local craftsmen to international audiences in New York and Japan.

Jasmita, a mother to a lovely daughter, has studied Textile Engineering from SCET, Surat. She loves a long road trip, especially if it takes her to the jungle, and is our resident party planner!

Nikita Mahakal

As Head Nutritionist at Cuddles Foundation, Nikita plans and oversees the delivery of the FoodHeals Programme across all our partner hospitals. Currently leading a team of 40+ nutritionists, she also plays a critical role in designing and executing our nutritionist training programmes. With an ear to the ground, she constantly monitors and evaluates our nutritional service to patients.

Before joining Cuddles Foundation, Nikita worked as a Corporate Nutritionist and Lifestyle Management Consultant. She holds a Master’s degree in Clinical Nutrition & Dietetics from SNDT University, Mumbai, and is a Registered Dietician (RD) with over nine years of experience in Nutrition & Health.

Ask her what brings her to work every day, and she’ll tell you it’s the kids and her team of nutritionists – ‘my girls’ – as she likes to call them.

Uma Seshadri

As Expansion and Enablement Consultant at Cuddles Foundation, Uma is responsible for identifying high impact locations and hospitals where nutrition provided by Cuddles may best augment childhood cancer survival rates. In this role, she is responsible for determining the right nutrition team and looking after their wellbeing at our partner hospitals. With her signature blend of zeal and empathy, she manages seamless collaboration with hospitals, doctors, hospital staff, parents of cancer afflicted children and the children themselves. 

Uma has a Diploma in Early Childhood Education and Counselling and a Bachelor’s degree in Commerce. A committed volunteer,  she has spent 14 years volunteering with various special needs schools in India and Singapore. As a Docent of the Singapore Arts Museum, she also curated museum tours for children with special needs. She likes to travel, immerse herself in culture, and loves listening to various music and dance genres in her free time.

Anju Morarka

As the Head of Research, Knowledge Management and Impact at Cuddles Foundation, Anju is deeply involved with monitoring and evaluating the FoodHeals program and assessing impact.  

Before joining Cuddles Foundation, Anju gained years of experience working at various leading international healthcare organisations, including Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and Pfizer, Inc.

Anju has her BA in Psychology from New York University and her Masters in Public Health from George Washington University. She is a published author whose work focuses on her epidemiological and statistical interpretations of health-related data. Online accessory shopping is her kryptonite.

Shiulee Baijal

Shiulee heads fundraising and major gifts at Cuddles Foundation. Along with her passionate team of fundraisers, she brings in the dollars needed to fuel our mission. She also oversees all major fundraising campaigns and donor relationships.

Before Cuddles, Shiulee worked with the financial services industry, managing commercial and wholesale banking with major Indian banks like ICICI and Kotak for more than 15 years. 

An Economics Honors graduate with a Master’s in Business Administration, Shiulee has spent more than 15 years in the financial services industry. An adventure buff, you’ll often find Shiulee sniffing out a deep-sea diving holiday.

Tanvi Chopra

Tanvi brings her experience from both the world of finance and the nonprofit sector to captain our ship. She oversees the day to day operations at the Mumbai office, ​​supporting and guiding national teams to execute their plans. She also leads the Finance function for Cuddles and guides our financial and operational strategy.

​Tanvi has a BA (Hons.) in Economics and ​an ​MSc in Finance. Before Cuddles, she has worked in the corporate and non-profit sector in various roles covering financial reporting and analysis, development banking, strategy and project management. Tanvi can be found lazying on a beach in Goa with a book in hand when not in our Mumbai office.

Priti Srivastava

As the Programs Head at Cuddles Foundation, Priti ensures continuous and seamless operations at our partner hospitals, designs solutions for any outages, and ensures that grants are utilised optimally across all centres. Priti also keeps a keen eye on program reporting and ensures that impact data is captured accurately and on time.

Before Cuddles Foundation, Priti worked for People Interactive in a leadership role as a Service Head. Priti has also worked with ICICI Bank managing International Banking and has diverse experience in risk management in the capital markets.

Priti holds a Master’s degree in Economics. An RD Burman and Bryan Adams fan, her idea of a chill day is listening to her favourite classics with a good cup of chai.