If the cause is good, Meera Gandhi puts her hand up. Thus, when the mother of filmmaker Mira Nair e- mailed asking her to support Salaam Balak Trust, a nonprofit that works for slum children in India, Gandhi agreed.

August 17, she will throw the doors of her heritage home - it used to be Eleanor Roosevelt's home - for cocktails after two screenings in Manhattan of Nair's big-budget Hollywood offering Vanity Fair.

The two special screenings, at two screens in the city, are ticketed at $175 per person, proceeds to go the charity. In between the two screenings is a cocktail session at the Gandhi home, with Nair on hand to welcome the guests.

The major part of the proceeds will go to Salaam Balak, while the rest will go to the Indo-American Arts Council chaired by Aroon Shivdasani.

Gandhi, as co-chair of Asia Society's series of fundraising private dinners titled Asia on My Mind, also raised $275,000 recently. One dinner was at the downtown Vivienne Tam gallery, while the other was at home.

"The Asia Society has always been a very special place for me to visit and I was delighted to be pulled in by [now Asia Society President] Vishakha Desai to chair this series and to raise so much successfully," Gandhi told India Abroad. "And this was fundraising to enable Asian artists to display their works in the US."

The special guest was billed to be CNN anchor Paula Zahn, but when she dropped out at the eleventh hour owing to President Ronald Reagan's death, close friend Ismail Merchant stepped in.