Chandi Heffner

Chandi Heffner is the founder and President of CDHIF USA, a nondiscriminatory, nonprofit organization that offers a multitude of services to people and animals in need. Beginning as a limited operation in 1998, CDHIF has expanded significantly, and it now treats more than 80,000 people and more than 50,000 animals a year. Chandi Heffner’s goal as founder is to adapt the form of aid according to the specific need of a person, while maintaining respect for the person’s religion and culture. She values the preservation of cultural practices and believes that it contributes to the health and wellness of her patients. Therefore, some of the projects organized by Chandi Heffner involve upholding traditions such as wood carving, stone carving, and performance arts.

CDHIF offers a vast array of services, including free medical care to humans and animals, vaccinations, medicine, meals, drinking water, clothing, temporary shelter, funeral services, and community projects that create employment for extended periods. One example of this was the Jamuna River cleanup project, which employed 500 to 600 people daily in India for four months.

Heffner’s principal role at the foundation is to fund and supervise daily operations. She researches the needs of people who are indigent and prepares the implementation of programs related to their needs. She also participates in fieldwork, and she cares for those seeking aid alongside her staff of doctors, veterinarians, technicians, and volunteers.

Chandi Heffner spends approximately nine months of the year managing the corresponding foundation, CDHIFI, in India. When in the United States, she lives on her ranch with her rescued horses, donkeys, pigs, and birds. Her favorite sports are polo and show jumping. In 2004, Heffner’s horse, Authentic, won the U.S. team a gold medal for show jumping at the Athens Olympics.

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